Modeling The Speech Act Of Insult
It is known that the whole invective vocabulary can be divided into performative and non-performative language units. Performative vocabulary is not taboo, it reflects an invective speech act as a fact and it is supercategorical to a non-performative speech act. Non-performative invective vocabulary is reflected in the category of conventionality and it is implemented at the functional level, which reflects a particular speaker's tactics. Thus, non-performative speech acts of insult represent a subcategory of performative speech acts of insult and reflect the real realization of the nominal potential of insult. The non-performative speech act of insult, meanwhile, is also divided into non-conventional and conventional speech acts, which is a reflection of the undirectedness/directedness of invective vocabulary. There are some ideal models of non-performative speech acts of insult which are revealed on the base of propositional approach in researching. The conventional act of insult is an insult expressed in the object structure. An unconventional act of insult is realized both in the object structure and in the predicate structure. According to the research syntactic French system and androcentric nature of French invective have huge impact on category of performativity / non-performativity.
Keywords: Modelinginvectiveconventionalityunconventionalityperformativitynon-performativitysyntactic structure
In all languages there is a layer of particular tabooed vocabulary. This kind of vocabulary is mostly prohibited, as it reflects, or rather destroys a one's personality, intrudes into his private - intimate - life. In this case, the invective vocabulary turns out to be multifunctional, since the problem of insulting an individual is not always connected with the invective vocabulary. Thus, there is a greater degree of subjectivism in the invective vocabulary: some vocabulary turns out to be offensive and some doesn’t. Meanwhile, this inoffensive vocabulary can be tabooed. Therefore, it is more correct to study invective vocabulary in a system with speech acts, i.e. as a result of realizing its nominal potential. It is necessary to separate the subjective perception of the invective from the real act of insult. In this case, this fact proves to be important, since the insult may result in humiliation, which has legal consequences. This article presents a study of speech acts that may result in legal relations.
The strong correlation of invective vocabulary with speech acts promotes its active studying in terms of speech act theory. The problem, however, proves to be multifaceted and not completely studied. For example, this is revealed in the existence of various interpretations and characteristics of the act of insult itself. For example, this is revealed in the existence of various interpretations and characteristics of the act of insult itself. Thus, due to its characteristics, the invective is studied through such notions as "verbal aggression" (Kolmakova & Shalkov, 2017), "communicative pressure", "moral influence" (Zhelvis, 2015). The legal basis of the invective is studied in such aspects as the communicative code (Gladkova & Larina, 2018; Wierzbicka, 1992) or the axiological code of the linguistic personality and, of course, the analysis of the language of law, where the results of the research on the invective find the practical application in compiling linguistic expertise on cases, related to the personality insult (Brinev, 2019; Posidelova, 2016). Problems and diagnostics of the invective in the legal aspect in Russia are handled by the specialists of the Guild of Linguistic Experts in Documentation and Information Disputes (Guild of Linguistic Experts in Documentation and Information Disputes, 2020) and the specialists of the "Jurislinguistics" laboratory, its employees issue a periodical scientific journal on this problem in Barnaul. The following aspects fall into the focus of forensic linguists: the use of offensive words involved in a wide linguistic context of the speech community (Chernikova, 2016; Merzlikina, 2016; Voloshin & Politova, 2018); analysis of a conflict statement from the interpreter's point of view (Salimova & Gazizov, 2016; Speranskaya, 1999); study of the author's "criminal intent" and evaluation of his intentions (Kosarenko & Kosarenko, 2015; Srebryanskaya, 2017) and analysis of the communicative conflict (Balakin & Ankov, 2015); study of the most frequent tactical moves leading to offense, mockery and insult (Issers, 1999; Kharchenko, 2015; Kozhevatova, 2015; Sypchenko, 2000) etc.
Thus, there is a need for a comprehensive study of the invective vocabulary system nominal potential, the implementation of which is carried out by means of speech acts of insult. It is necessary not only to qualify, but also to distinguish between speech acts of insults, that can lead to legal consequences. This aspect of the invective has so far not been studied systematically. Despite the fact that the study has been inspired by the invectives in French, in general the principles of realizing its nominal potential are the same for all languages.
A main issue in the classification of speech acts of insult is the correlation of directivity/undirectivity of such speech acts. Directivity (or conventionality) gives the speech act of insult the tinge of insult. The category of conventionality / non-conventionality may serve as a theoretical basis for the development of special methodological literature for court officials and expert criminal laboratories, practicing lawyers facing legal qualification of the speech act of "insult". Despite the fact that the study has been inspired by the invectives in French, in general the principles of realizing its nominal potential are the same for all languages.
The category of conventionality / non-conventionality may serve as a theoretical basis for the development of special methodological literature for court officials and expert criminal laboratories, practicing lawyers facing legal qualification of the speech act of "insult".
Despite the fact that the study has been inspired by the invectives in French, in general the principles of realizing its nominal potential are the same for all languages.
Purpose of the Study
The purpose of the article is to identify, describe and classify lexico-semantic and syntactic means by which the nominal potential of invective vocabulary in French is realized, as well as to distinguish speech acts of insult, leading to legal relations.
The study was conducted from the speech acts theory point of view in the analysis of the invective vocabulary functioning on the basis of the proposition reflecting the relationship between the invector and invectum. At the same time, the most important issue is the invective vocabulary nominative potential realization in such acts of insult, and also the nature of such an act; this connection affects the degree of invectivity, and in general, the conditions of invective vocabulary nominative potential realization.
The relationship between the invector and invectum is formed on the basis of the addressant's statement towards the addressee of language units of deteriorative character. It is considered that the addressee perceives the invective lexicon as insulting due to the fact that there is a strong propositional connection between the addressant and the addressee. This connection is ensured by a directed invective predicate. On the basis of a propositional analysis of invective vocabulary functioning, it is possible to determine types and classification of speech acts of insult.
The presence of at least two parties in an invective act, as well as special relations between them, proves the propositional nature of invective speech act of insult. A propositional structure, or proposition, is a mental representation of the subject's interaction with objects surrounding it. It can be said that the speech act of an invective is the process of actualizing the invective vocabulary in the propositional structure by establishing the correlation between the subject and the object. Meanwhile, the invective has a propositional orientation: the invective is effective if it is aimed at something or someone. Thus, the propositional structure is subordinated to certain laws of tactics, which are distinguished into stereotypical models subordinated to a certain prototype.
From a propositional point of view, invective speech acts can be performative and non-performative, reflecting performative and non-performative language units belonging to the invective field. The performative and non-performative speech act of insult generally denotes a speech act of aggression and, in particular, insult. However, performative linguistic units come into complex correlations with the speech act: they do not carry an invective "charge", but they are classifiers for non-performative invective words. This axiom is fair for all languages. Thus, the classification of verbal acts of insult can be represented as hierarchically interdependent elements.
Being in a more or less independent position, both levels are linked by overlapping a relationship between performative and non-performative particular units. Thus, non-performative invectives belong to one performative classifier. However, even if an invective word contains a certain classifier in its definition, the identification of an invective vocabulary is difficult because one and the same non-performative unit may belong to several performative classifiers. All of this suggests that a non-performative language unit has a blurred denotate, but strongly developed connotative meaning.
Schematically, the performative act of insult looks like this: 1 - A verb (1 person, singular, present tense) - 2 - 3 (a name), where element 1 is considered as a subject of an invective action, a kind of source of performative expression and behaviour, the verb reveals the characteristic of such behaviour (insult, naming, addressing, evaluation, etc.), element 2 denotes an object of influence to which an insult, threat, blackmail, etc. is directed, element 3 symbolizes a name (predicate name or a noun). For example:
The performative expression of a speech act of insult is primarily related to the use of performative language units
At the same time, the meaning of the whole speech act depends on the meaning of the language unit denoting the term "insult". It should be noted that the words
This is evidenced by the contextual analysis carried out. Thus, the language unit under study characterizes the insult to a specific person, both official (a well-known person) and someone you may know. For example, insults can be directed against political figures. Cf.:
Non-performatively, the whole French invective is realized through a conventional and unconventional speech act of insult. It is in such acts that "true" invective - swear words – is used, and it is after such speech acts that legal consequences for the offending person may occur. The study shows that the non-performative conventional speech act of insult is statistically the most common insult in French, the types of this act depend on the kind of invectum identified in a particular invective vocabulary, as well as on the tactics of the invector, which is considered of what language means and what syntactic form was used. In this case, the invector selects two options: to expresses his negative opinion with help of a predicate, or with help of invective vocabulary in the structure of the inverter. Invectum category is based on the animate / inanimate opposition, i.e. the invectum of non-performative conventional insult is divided into two types: Invectum - animate and invectum - inanimate. Thus, the structure of the non-performative conventional insult is as follows:
Here is a list of non-performative conventional speech acts of insults in the inanimate category: 1. Invector - predicate - invectum (unpleasant feeling); 2. invector - predicate - invectum (a conclusion); 3. invector - predicate - invectum (unpleasant event); 4. invector - predicate - invectum (unpleasant physical item).
Here is a list of non-performative conventional speech acts of insult in terms of the category of animacy: 1. invector - predicate - invectum (human mentality); 2. invector - predicate - invectum (man and his immoral behavior); 3. invector - predicate - invectum (man compared to woman); 4. invector - predicate - invectum (woman and her immoral behavior); 5. invector - predicate - invectum (a talker); 6. invector - predicate - invectum (a person who is not allow to talk); 7. invector - predicate - invectum (threatened person); 8. invector - predicate - invectum (one’s appearance); 9. invector - predicate - invectum (fight); 10. invector - predicate - invectum (an immoral behavior in general); 11. invector - predicate - invectum (national features).
The non-performative conventional speech act of insult is realized through the actualization of invective verbs in the structure of predicates. In this case, verbs can actualize the following predicates depending on their invector’s intention: "invector’s indifference", " invector’s mockery", " invector’s negative attitude", "incorrect actions of the third party", " invector’s negligent attitude to something or someone", " invector’s accusation and curse", "insulting mental abilities of the person", "negative attitude to the current situation", " invectum’s incorrect behavior", "anxiety". Let's take a closer look at each predicate.
For example, a speech act of insult, in which the invector expresses its indifference, is most often actualized by the verbs
A speech act of insult where the invector expresses its indifferent attitude is realized through the verbs
For a non-performative conventional insult, a syntactic construction that reflects the locust intentions of the invector becomes an important part.
In this case, the invector directly insults the invectum, but with the help of inappropriate invective words. The predicate is expressed in non-invective verbal constructions. The following fact should be noted: despite its simplified structure, the number of invective units is clearly determined.
As the study in French has shown, the invector uses tactics that are reflected in the syntactic constructions of simple and extended sentences. Based on this, we have the following classification of non-performative conventional insults: 1. a simple sentence, which is divided into: simple act; interjectional act; act of insult with parcellularity; complex speech act of insult; 2. extended sentence, which is subdivided into: acts in which predicates are expressed by means of verbs; speech acts of insult complicated by epithets; speech acts complicated by determinants; speech acts of insult formed by means of a compound verb predicate.
For example, conventional acts formed in a simple sentence are syntactically made up with the help of a compound verb predicate, i.e. "subject + predicate + invective word". Such constructions are the statements expressing a real state of things (circumstances). Cf.:
A simple, non-performative, conventional speech act of insult is the most offensive. As it is such a speech act of insult, which in the structure of the predicate actualizes the state verb
The study shows that it is in such non-performative conventional speech acts that legal consequences for the offender may occur. The last one refers directly to an invective word. This is indicated by the syntactic construction of this type of speech act of insult. The invector only directs a swear word - without additional language units. That is, there is nothing in offensive tactics but a desire to insult. Cf.:
Thus, the classification of speech acts of insult is based on two global categories: performativity / non-performativity, conventionality / unconventionality. The study found that non-performative acts of insult reflect the supercategorical nature of non-performative speech acts of insult. A performative act of insult reflects only the fact of insult. Non-performative speech acts of insult represent a subcategory of performative speech acts of insult and reflect the actual realization of the nominal potential of insult. The non-performative speech act of insult is divided into unconventional and conventional speech acts, this reflects the undirectivity/directivity of invective vocabulary.
The category of unconventionality / conventionality is composed of subtypes of syntactic models reflecting the speaker's tactics. The conventional act of insult is an insult expressed in the object structure. The unconventional act of insult is implemented both from the structure of the object and the predicate, and in terms of syntax is divided into two types. Identification (diagnosis) of this type is a very important process, as it is the most offensive to an invectum (person insulted). The recognition of such speech acts is crucial to the decision on the criminal act of insult.
- Balakin, S. V., & Ankov, A. A. (2015). Nominativnyj i derivacionnyj potencial koncepta «invektiv» (na primere francuzskoj lingvokul'tury) [Nominative and Derivation Potential of Concept “Invective” (By The Example Of The French Linguistic-Culture)]. Filologicheskie nauki. Voprosy teorii i praktiki, 3(45), 24–27.
- Brinev, K. I. (2019). Facts and Assessments, Facts and Opinions: Analysis of Oppositions Subjective / Objective, Verified / Unverified. Culture and Text, 4(39), 194–201.
- Chernikova, L. F. (2016). The Use of Obscene Vocabulary (Invectives) as a Social and Pedagogical Problem. Economy, Governance, Law and Society (Materials of the I Interregional Scientific and Practical Conference), 142–145.
- Gladkova, A., & Larina, T. (2018). Anna Wierzbicka, language, culture and communication. Russian Journal of Linguistics, 22(4), 717-748. https://doi.org/10.22363/2312-9182-2018-22-4-717-748
- Guild of Linguistic Experts in Documentation and Information Disputes (2020, January 23). http://rusexpert.ru/
- Issers, O. S. (1999). Freedom of speech: two sides of the medal (insult in the mirror of jurisprudence and linguistics). Jurislinguistics-1: Problems and perspectives. Barnaul: AGU Publishing House, 108–124.
- Kharchenko, V. K. (2015). Linguistic Safety and Offensive Language. Urban management: theory and practice, 1(16), 93-101.
- Kolmakova, V. V., & Shalkov, D. Yu. (2017). The problem of identifying the markers of linguistic insult. Philological sciences. The questions of theory and practice, 12(78), 111–113.
- Kosarenko, O. T., & Kosarenko, S. V. (2015). On the Invective Discourse in The Modern Russian Language Reality (A Lingvo-Cultural Aspect). Izvestia VGPU Social sciences, 1(266), 166–169.
- Kozhevatova, I. S. (2015). Factors increasing the invective potential of irony (on the modern journalistic material). Philology and a man, 2, 2–7.
- Merzlikina, O. V. (2016). Gender asymmetry of the Spanish Invective. Word, statement, text in cognitive, pragmatic and culturological aspects materials of the VIII International Scientific Conference: in 2 volumes. responsible editor L.A. Nefedova, 192–196.
- Posidelova, V. V. (2016). The linguistic and legal aspects of invective Russian vocabulary. Philosophy of Law, 2(75), 13–17.
- Romanova, L. A., & Kostyaev, F. P. (2009). Performative Invectives in the Expressive Discourse. World of linguistics and communication: electronic scientific journal, 15, 35 –38.
- Salimova, G. N., & Gazizov, R. A. (2016). Verbal Invective Vocabulary as a Type of Communicative Taboos. Bulletin of Bashkir University, 2(21), 351–354.
- Speranskaya, A. H. (1999). Word insult in the everyday and legal consciousness of Russian native speakers. Jurislinguistics-1: Problems and prospects. Barnaul: AGU Publishing House.
- Srebryanskaya, N. A. (2017). Zoonyms in the Role of Invectives in English Destructive Communication. Izvestia of Voronezh State Pedagogical University, 1(274), 172–179.
- Sypchenko, S. V. (2000). About types of the invective texts as an object of linguistic expertise problem. Jurislinguistics-2: Russian language in its natural and legal forms. Barnaul: AGU Publishing House, 213–220.
- Voloshin, Yu. K., & Politova, E. A. (2018). Semiotics and Obscene Vocabulary. Actual Problems of Philology and Pedagogical Linguistics, 4(32), 82–88. https://doi.org/10.29025/2079-6021-2018-4(32)-82-88
- Wierzbicka, A. (1992). Semantics, Culture and Cognition: Universal Human Concepts in Culture-Specific Configurations. Oxford University Press.
- Wortschatz Universität Leipzig (2020, January 23). Retrieved from http://corpora.uni-leipzig.de
- Zhelvis, V. I. (2015). “The Verbal War is Boiling Hot…” (On the Problems of Tabooed Language in Mass Media). Media Linguistics, 1(6), 111–114.]
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
About this article
Cite this paper as:
Click here to view the available options for cite this article.
VolumeEpSBS / Volume 86 - WUT 2020