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									Word Coinage & Morphemes

           Byungmin Lee
Dept. of English Language Education
Discreteness: Molecules vs. Morphemes
• The knowledge of discrete units in a
  particular language and the rules for
  combining them accounts for the creativity
  of human language.
• Linguistic creativity refers to a person’s
  ability to produce and understand an infinite
  range of sentences and words never before
    Bound & Free Morphemes
• One of the morphological knowledge in
  English is to know whether a morpheme can
  stand alone or whether they must be
  attached to a host morpheme.
• Bound morphemes: -ish, -ness, -ly, trans-,
  un-, pre-, bi-, -ing, -er, -ist,
• Bound morphemes: prefix, suffix, infix,
              Word Structure
•   Root + affixes
•   Stem
•   Stem
•   Stem
•   Stem
•   Stem
•   Word
                Morphological Tricks
• It had been a rough day, so when I walked into the party I was very
  (non)-chalant (indifferent, calm), despite my efforts to appear (dis)-
  gruntled (discontented) and (dis)-consolate (extremely sad). I was
  furling my (un)-wieldy (not easy to handle) umbrella . . . When I saw
  her. . . . She was a (non)-descript (unremarkable) person. . . . Her
  hair was (un)-kempt (untidy), her clothing (dis)-shevelled (with
  messed-up hair) ,, and she moved in a (un)-gainly (lacking grace)
  way. (The New Yorker)
• Chalior (to be unimportant), Chaleur(heat), chaleureux(열정적인),
  chaleureusement(adv.), calere (Latin: to be hot or roused).
Word Coinage: Conversion (zero
• Verb to noun: a swim, hit, cheat, show-off, drive-
  in, a doubt
• Adjective to noun: a bitter, natural, final, monthly,
  regular, wet
• Noun to verb: to bottle, catalogue, oil, brake,
  referee, bicycle
• Adjective to verb: to dirty, empty, dry, calm down,
  sober u p
• Paper (noun)—wallpaper, newspaper, academic
  article, but Lecturers and editors paper their
  rooms, but not their audiences or readers.
    Word Coinage: Conversion
• Grammatical words to noun:
  – Too many ifs and buts
  – That’s a must
  – The how and the why
• Affix to noun
  – Ologies and Isms
• Grammatical words to verb
  – To down tools/to up
Conversion: Stress & Tone
   Verb       Noun
   Record     Record
   Produce    Produce
   Reject     reject
   Convict    Convict
   Progress   Progress
   Convert    Convert
    Word Coinage: Compounds
• A combination of two or more lexical stems
• Stem + stem + stem + . . .+
• notoriously low-paid private guards; The
  year-end deadline; sophisticated bomb-
  detection machines; use CT-scan
  technology; flexible explosive-trace-
  detection equipment. (In the editorial of the
  New York Times, 4/1/2002)
     Word Coinage: Compound
• Roh, elected to parliament from Pusan in 1988,
  grilled the leaders of the former regime as millions
  of Koreans watched on television, dumb-founded
  (dumbstruck) and delighted by his no-holds-barred
• No-go area
• Greenback (American bank note)
• OneLOOK: dumb* or top*
  Word Coinage: Backformation
• Backformation: the process of creating a new word by
  removing a real or supposed affix from another word.
   –   Editor  edit;
   –   peddler, swindler and stoker  peddle, swindle, stoke
   –   Television  televise; Baby-sitter baby-sit
   –   Enthusiasm  enthuse; Resurrection -> resurrect
   –   Donationdonate; Speech therapists  therap
• A tidy person is described as couth, kempt, or shevelled
  from uncouth, unkempt, unshevelled
• Even today, self-destruct from self-destruction, and even
  intuit from intuition.
  Word Coinage: Reduplicatives

• Reduplicative
  – Goody-goody; teeny-weeny(very small, tiny);
    ping-pong; flip-flop; super-duper
  – Din-din; wishy-washy(watery, weak,
  – See-saw, walkie-talkie
  – 역전(한자어) + 앞 (우리말)
• Blends: words which are extracted from non-
  morphemic parts of either of the two existing
• a partial mix of two words; the second elements
  control meaning.
   – Mo+tel; br+unch; heli+port; adver+torial;
     ch+unnel(channel+tunnel); Ox+bridge; Ya+rvard;
     docu+fantasies, rock+umentaries,
     swim+sational(swim+sensational), sports+ataional,
1st Word      2nd word      Blend word
Breakfast     Lunch         Brunch
Smoke         Fog           smog
Spiced        Ham           spam
Telephone     Marathon      telethon
Information   Commercial    Infomercial
Motor         Hotel         Motel
Binary        Digit         Bit
Modulator     Demodulator   Modem
Fantastic     Fabulous      Fantabulous
Town+house    Hyper+text    Key+pad
clam+ato      Docu+drama    Breath+alyser
   – UNICEF (United Nations International Children's
     Emergency Fund)
   – NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization)
   – ACAS (Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service).
   – NIMBY (Not In My Back Yard)
   – Yuppie (Young, Urban Professional)
   – DINK (Double Income - No Kids).
   – SARS(Sudden Acute Respiratory Syndrome)
• In some cases, speakers are usually unaware that
  the word is derived from an acronym, as in the
  cases of “radar” (radio detecting and ranging) and
  “scuba” (self contained underwater breathing
• One common aspect of clipping involves names:
  Bob, Mike, Tom, Rich, Jan, Babs.
• Clipping is popular among young people, and has
  yielded forms such as prof, phys-ed, burger, and
  sabbing(the act of sabotage in B.E), 즐.
• In some cases, the abbreviated forms are accepted
  into general usage: doc, ad, auto, lab, porn, demo,
  resulting in the clipped word becoming the
  standard. For example, zoo was formed from the
  term zoological garden, and fax comes from
         Inflectional Morphology
• If the affix is demanded by the syntactic context,
  then it is an inflectional affix.
• Examples:
   –   * The boy walk ==> walk-s
   –   * The boy are sick ==> boy-s
   –   * The boys inquire yesterday ==> inquire-d
   –   * He is tall than me ==> tall-er
   –   * The boy book is new ==> boy's
• They never change the syntactic category of the
  words or morphemes to which they are attached.
  They are always attached to complete words.
         Inflectional Morphemes
• There are a total of eight bound inflectional affixes:
   –   -s third person singular present
   –   -ed past tense
   –   -ing progressive
   –   -en past participle
   –   -s plural
   –   -'s possessive
   –   -er comparative
   –   -est superlative
• Inflectional morphemes in English typically
  follow derivational morphemes.
      Derivational morphemes
1. No (syntactic) context ever demands the
  presence of a derivational affix.

• 2. Certain bound morphemes (prefixes or
  suffixes) have the effect of changing the
  lexical category of the word to which they
  are affixed: truthful, establishment, darken,
  frighten, and teacher.
       Derivational Morpheme
In English such morphemes tend to be added to the
   end of words as suffixes. We can represent these
   relationships as in the following rules:
• Noun + -ful --> Adjective (beautiful)
• Adjective + -ly --> Adverb (truly)
• Verb + -ment --> Noun (amazement)
• Verb + -er --> Noun (rider)
• Adjective + -en --> Verb (harden)
• Noun + en --> Verb (frighten)
Inflectional vs. Derivational Morphemes
    Exceptions and Suppletions
• Irregular
• Ring-rang-rung; child-children; sheep-sheep;
  bring-brought; go-went-gone; run-ran-run
• However, regularity is more powerful
   – Noun  verb, then a regular rule applied: ring-ringed-
     ringed (the police ringed the bank with armed men.)
   – Foot  feet
   – However, Flatfoot (means cop, slang)  two flatfoots
            Regular vs. Irregular
• Regular plurals don’t like appearing inside
   –   Bird-watchers
   –   Beatle records
   –   Yankee fans
   –   Two-pounded bags
   –   Three-week vacations
   –   All-season tires
   –   anteaters
        Regular vs. Irregular
• But, irregular plurals appear inside
• Mice-infested vs. *rats-infested
• Teethmarks vs. clawsmarks
• Men-bashing vs. guys-bashing
• A purple-people-eater vs. a purple-babies-
            Regular vs. Irregular
•   Mice bait (a sign outside a general store)
•   Mice cube (a better mousetrap)
•   Mice-drivers (Microsoft software)
•   I felt mice-feet of apprehension scurrying over my
•   Bad maps, mice-infested lodgings, and strict rules.
•   Frozen mice sperm (headline)
•   Cells implanted in mice brains: Hope is voiced for
    mental ills (headline)
•   Mobile phone radiation mice tumor link much
    stronger than expected (headline)
•   Mice accessories (a sign in a computer store)
         Regular vs. Irregular
• Dvandva compounds: two nouns apply equally to
  some chimerical or twice-described person.
  – Man-child, manfish, man Friday, manservant, man-
    woman, woman-doctor, girlfriend, boyfriend, boy-king,
    player-coach, singer-songwriter
  – Men-children, menfish, menservants, gentlemen-
    farmers, women writers, women-doctors
  – Not, *boys-kings, *girlsfriends, *players-coaches
                 A Model of Word Building

Memorized Roots
(including irregulars)

        Complex word formation

                   Regular Inflection


              Mice-infested vs. girl+friend+s

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