To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure email@example.com
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
I show how the account of strong evaluative meaning developed in Chapter 1 allows us to overcome problems in prominent views among neo-Aristotelians of the relationship of virtue to happiness (e.g., instrumentalist accounts) by enabling us to regard virtue as constitutive of happiness understood as a normatively higher, nobler, more meaningful mode of life, and which I show is in keeping with Aristotle’s own view of eudaimonia. I engage here especially with Philippa Foot, since she has endorsed each of the prominent views I consider throughout her career. In making the case for my constitutive view I also seek to avoid McDowell’s problematic claim that “no sacrifice necessitated by the life of excellence … can count as a genuine loss.” My account of a meaningful life aims to address the problem of loss in human life, which I argue requires us to address the problem of cosmodicy (i.e., the problem of affirming life in the world as worthwhile in the face of evil and suffering). This problem is taken up further in Chapters 4 and 5.
This section defines Meaning for the purposes of a multimodal grammar: the processes of making sense of the world using material media and their associated cognitive architectures; making sense of what we encounter in the natural and human-historical worlds; making sense to each other; our social and personal means of intending and acting; the patterns in these meanings and the traces they leave in the form of media artifacts; and the transpositions of meaning across different forms (text, image, space, body, sound, and speech) and function (reference, agency, structure, context, and interest).
I introduce the main theme of the book: the problem of disenchantment and neo-Aristotelian ethics as a response to this problem. I also describe my central objective of articulating and defending an even fuller kind of re-enchantment than is found in any of the major neo-Aristotelian views on offer and how this is connected to an understanding of human beings as being fundamentally and distinctively the meaning-seeking animal. Additionally, I seek to clarify what is meant by “disenchantment” and “re-enchantment” in order to avoid some possible misunderstandings. Finally, I provide an overview of each of the chapters that follow.
I seek to establish the claim that we are fundamentally and distinctively the meaning-seeking animal through an exploration of the engaged standpoint from within our human form of life, where it can be seen that our human form of life is shaped by “strong evaluative meaning,” that is, meaning or value that involves qualitative distinction (e.g., between higher and lower, noble and base, sacred and profane, etc.) and places normative demands upon us. I also show how this dimension of meaning is overlooked by the dominant neo-Aristotelian approach because of its emphasis on a disengaged standpoint on our human form of life rather than an engaged standpoint and, thus, it does not provide us with an adequate philosophical anthropology and along with this it does not provide us with an adequate account of our reasons for the life of virtue. Moreover, I seek to counter a disenchanting move made by such neo-Aristotelians that involves denying any special realm of obligation. There is such a realm, I argue, and it is the whole realm of strong evaluative meaning, which includes more than just the domain of “the moral” narrowly construed as concerned with what we owe to others.
The aim was to understand the processes of therapeutic changes in Meaning-Centered Group Psychotherapy (MCGP) in a Portuguese sample.
Adult cancer patients with distress motivated to participate in MCGP were identified; descriptive and narrative analyses were performed on the session content.
The sample had 24 participants (mean age: 63.43 years); the majority were females (75%), with a median academic degree (54%). Breast cancer was most frequent (67%) at the localized stage (71%). The narrative analysis defined seven categories according to the MCGP themes. In “Moments with Meaning (MwM),” the most relevant dimensions were related to interpersonal relations, the moment of diagnosis, and personal achievements. This category established relations with almost all other categories, as did the category “historical sources of meaning (SoM).” The category “identity before and after cancer diagnosis” was only related to “attitudinal SoM” and “transitions.” Historical SoM had two dimensions, “past” and “present and future” legacies, in which prominent topics related to family, childhood, achieved goals, and values to pass to others explored. Attitudinal SoM established relations only with the category “creative SoM,” in which “courage” and “responsibility” were the main dimensions, which were also related to “MwM,” “historical,” and “attitudinal SoM.” Experiential SoM, with the main dimension “love,” was related to “MwM” and “historical SoM.” Transitions only established relations with “historical SoM” and “identity before and after cancer.”
Significance of results
The findings that “MwM” and “historical SoM” were the categories which established a solid pattern of relations suggest that these are the main psychotherapy topics that can have more influence for the participants; one explanation is that these categories imply a concrete way of thinking, which is easier to understand. This process of therapeutic changes must be integrated in a cultural context, as it is well known to have an impact upon the “meaning” of life.
Medical advances have expanded life, resulting in an extended dying process that allows for time to contemplate mortality and the broader existential themes of life. This period of time is rich with opportunities for the dying person to have one last opportunity to understand and resolve issues previously left unaddressed. This chapter aims to assist clinicians in addressing the psychosocial concerns of patients approaching the end of life.
In recent decades, identity has served a critical role in the study of World Englishes (WEs). At the core of this interest lies the idea that changing forms of identity construction may have played a crucial part among the groups involved in the development of New Englishes. However, not everyone agrees on the role identity may have played in the development of WEs. This chapter locates this research strand in recent theoretically based ideas about identity. It provides an overview of the different perspectives of identity within sociolinguistics and relates this to the study of WEs. It then outlines Third-Wave Variationist Sociolinguistics and some of its central issues pertaining to WEs, identity, and indexicality. Representative studies are considered that provide empirical evidence of identity performance and indexicality in a variety of local and global contexts. These concern, in particular, (1) the social meanings of features of English at the micro level of interaction, in which identity work is most transparent, and (2) the perception of linguistic features.
This chapter provides a critical review of the cross-modal lexical priming (CMLP) paradigm and its variants as used in the bilingual lexical access literature. We first discuss methodological concerns related to task processing demands and the specific requirements (e.g., ecological validity, online vs. offline) required to appropriately assess bilingual exhaustive activation. We then go on to discuss the functionality and reliability of the CMLP and its implementations in bilingual cross-language priming, bilingual figurative language processing (e.g., idioms and metaphors), and word type effects (e.g., homophones, homographs). We underscore the CMLP’s capability and flexibility to probe for bilingual multiple lexical activation at multiple points throughout the spoken sentence and provide early and late measures of language processing.
This chapter provides a critical overview of translation ambiguity, which arises when bilinguals are confronted with a situation in which more than one translation is possible for a given word. We first discuss the sources of translation ambiguity, its prevalence, and the methods for measuring it. We then describe the consequences of translation ambiguity for lexical processing and learning. Finally, we explore how translation ambiguity can be modeled in the bilingual mental lexicon and discuss the possibility that bilingualism is another expression of ambiguity in which the bilingual mind is constantly activating multiple meanings in translation.
This chapter reviews the basics of cognition, showing how old ideas about learning as storehouses of information, standing at the ready to address problems, have given way to much more complex notions about how our brains make meaning of information by attaching it – or not – to existing mental models. Meaning-making is not only vital to our survival as a species but also presents a challenge to our cognitive development. How we change our mental models is known as transformative learning, arguably the most important theory on adult learning in the last half-century.
This chapter explores the importance of critical reflection on human experience. Critical reflection is not an innate human quality and so must be cultivated. What distinguishes critical reflection from simple reflection is the assessment of one’s assumptions, especially hegemonic assumptions, those deeply ingrained presumptions about existing power relationships in society. Critical reflection is important throughout all aspects of human learning, including the development of expertise and the incidental learning that happens every day, usually below our conscious awareness.
Chapter 3 looks at what the campaigns in the Middle East and Macedonia meant to soldiers. In the early stages of the campaigns, many soldiers were fed up at being ‘exiled’ from the Western Front and embarrassed not to be fighting Germans. So far from the Western Front, they had to find a different meaning for their campaigns. Some soldiers found a personal meaning in the greater likelihood that they would survive the war, while others, mostly pre-war regular soldiers, were concerned about career mobility. Strategic and moral meanings were also found. In diaries and letters home, soldiers argued that they were contributing to the global war effort and the defeat of the Central Powers. Others argued that they were liberating Arabs and Jews from Ottoman misrule and bringing the benefits of liberal imperialism to the supposedly backward peoples of the Middle East and the Greeks. In both this chapter and in Chapter 5, it is impossible not to see in the writings of soldiers and ex-servicemen an argument for Britain’s imperial project – that, to them, the war and the aims of British liberal imperialism were compatible and mutually reinforced each other.
Chapter 6 analyzes word association responses, categorizes them into meaning-based and syntagmatic and compares to the patterns of corresponding usage corpora. It shows that words eliciting meaning-based responses tend to be independent in usage while words eliciting syntagmatic responses tend to participate in multi-word units, suggesting that word associations can indeed say something about the processes at work in language use. A deeper analysis of syntagmatic associations and their comparison to usage patterns suggest the psycholinguistic reality of the model of a unit of meaning and in particular of abstracted associations: those of colligation and semantic preference. The chapter also discusses the core meaning effect, the influence of directionality and contiguity on the strength of association, the relationship of syntagmatic association to the boundaries of a unit of meaning as well as the evidence of the processes of fixing and approximation observed in Chapter 5.
Chapter 7 summarizes the findings and offers a bigger picture with regard to (1) the idiom principle in L2 acquisition and use, (2) the model of a unit of meaning and (3) the processes behind the phraseological tendency of language. It argues that the idiom principle is available to L2 users to a larger degree than is often thought. It then proposes an ‘atomic’ model of a unit of meaning, shows how the processes of fixing and approximation fit into the larger processes of delexicalization and meaning-shift, further develops the idea of a continuum of delexicalization suggested in Chapter 2 as well as explains the connection between these ideas and the concepts of relexicalization and re-metaphorization. The chapter ends with a discussion of limitations and promising directions of future research.
Chapter 2 provides an in-depth discussion of Sinclair’s conceptualization of lexis and meaning and its major concepts. It starts from the model of a unit of meaning and explains how it is capable of incorporating both syntagmatic and paradigmatic axes of meaning by including optional variable components of collocation, colligation and semantic preference. The chapter continues by offering a theoretical solution of removing the borderline between single- and multi-word units. Further it points out the difference between Firth’s and Sinclair’s conceptions of collocation and defines the relationships between the idiom principle, co-selection, syntagmatic association, core meaning, delexicalization and meaning-shift. A large part of the chapter is devoted to examining the controversy around the concept of semantic prosody. The chapter concludes by discussing Sinclair’s theory of meaning and his idea of the ultimate dictionary. The conceptualization presented in the chapter forms the theoretical backbone of the book.
Preference for semantic analyzability in ELF creates “utterer-implicatures” that usually do not implicate anything beyond what is said. But still we have kept calling them implicatures and not “implicitures” or “explicatures” as they are called in the Gricean literature because they are the results of the same mechanism as in L1. In ELF interactions there is a kind of pragmaticization of semantics which is a synchronic, one-off phenomenon in which coded meaning, sometimes without any specific pragmatic enrichment based on the target language, obtains temporary pragmatic status. ELF speakers need this online pragmaticalization because they cannot rely on pragmatic effects as in L1. So ELF users need to build up temporary frames and norms in the course of interaction. Actual situation context does not help because it is understood differently by interlocutors. So ELF users will produce and interpret a pragmatic act, including implicatures, mainly based on its semantic content that is pragmaticized not by the actual contextual effect or core common ground but by prior context and co-constructed emergent common ground. This ELF pragmatics relies not on existing norms and conventions but rather on emergent intention, innovation, emergent common ground, online frame building and one-off strategies.
Meaning-centered psychotherapy (MCP) is a structured psychotherapeutic intervention that aims to improve existential and spiritual well-being in patients with advanced cancer. To validate it, several efficacy studies with predominantly non-Hispanic white patients have been done. Puerto Ricans residing on the island are a largely overlooked segment of the US Latinx population. They have a strong national identity and are embedded in a collectivist culture which shares the Spanish language, cultural traditions, and an emphasis on familism, a cultural factor that values the role of the family in ensuring the well-being of its members.
The purpose of this study is to present a case study focused on a Puerto Rican advanced cancer patient who underwent MCP to assess the comprehension and acceptance of the MCP intervention.
We used a mixed-methods study design that included the taking of ethnographic notes, and pre- and post-test assessments of the scores the patient received on all the measures (using validated scales). The ethnographic notes were analyzed to determine the participant's comprehension and acceptance of the MCP intervention. Content analysis was performed on the ethnographic notes by three independent coders using a deductive coding approach. Pre- and post-interview assessments were conducted to explore changes in distress, spiritual well-being, and self-perceived quality of life.
A Latino patient with stage III cancer, low income, and low literacy skills showed low comprehension of the concepts of meaning, the finite, legacy, and moderate comprehension and acceptance of the concepts of the search for hope, purpose in life, connecting with life, courage, life's limitations, and sources of meaning. However, the patient showed high comprehension of death and dying (i.e., meaningful death). The patient showed low acceptance of death and dying concepts and high acceptance of the integration of family members into the therapy.
Significance of Results
Additional studies are needed to address cultural themes and to improve the comprehensibility and acceptance of the manual's content and the central MCP concepts. The findings suggest that MCP has the potential of being a feasible form of psychotherapy for Latinx patients suffering from distress, low spiritual well-being, and low self-perceived QOL.