The Urgency of Genetic Proximity of the Opposition of Otsutstviye (Absence) – Prysutstviye (Presence) for Cognitive Studies of Notion Otsutstviye (Absence)

 © The Editorial Council and Editorial Board of Linguistic Studies

Linguistic Studies
Volume 34, 2017, pp.  133-138

The Urgency of Genetic Proximity of the Opposition of Otsutstviye (Absence) – Prysutstviye (Presence) for Cognitive Studies of Notion Otsutstviye (Absence)

Radchuk Olga

Article first published online: December 20, 2017 


Additional information

 Author Information: 

Radchuk Olga, Candidate of Science (Philology), Assistant Professor of the Slavic Languages Department H.S. Skovoroda. Kharkiv National Pedagogical University. Correspondence: radchuk.o.v@ukr.net

Citation: 
Radchuk, O. The Urgency of Genetic Proximity of the Opposition of Otsutstviye (Absence) – Prysutstviye (Presence) for Cognitive Studies of Notion Otsutstviye (Absence) [Text] // Linhvistychni Studiyi / Linguistic Studies : collection of scientific papers / Donetsk National University; Ed. by Anatoliy Zahnitko. Vinnytsia : Vasyl' Stus DonNU, 2017. Vol. 34. Pp. 133-138. ISBN 966-7277-88-7

Publication History:

Volume first published online: December 20, 2017
Article received: September 10, 2017, accepted: November 30, 2017 and first published online: December 20, 2017

Annotation.

Із застосуванням методу інтерпретації семантики та етимологічного аналізу автором розглянуто абстрактні опозити ‘відсутність - присутність’. На основі встановлених генетичних зв’язків цієї антонімічної пари простежено розвиток та зміну їхньої семантики та граматичної експлікації. Доведено, що представлені поняття мають соціокультурну детермінацію, а поняття ‘відсутність’ є психологічним ключем для когнітивного розуміння багатьох дефініцій.

Keywords: cognitive linguistics, the methods of the etymological analysis and the semantic interpretation, the notions otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence – presence).



Abstract.

THE URGENCY OF GENETIC PROXIMITY OF THE OPPOSITION OF OTSUTSTVIYE (ABSENCE) – PRYSUTSTVIYE (PRESENCE) FOR COGNITIVE STUDIES OF NOTION OTSUTSTVIYE (ABSENCE)

OlgaRadchuk

Slavic Languages Department, H.S. Skovoroda. Kharkiv National Pedagogigal University, Kharkiv, Kharkiv region, Ukraine

Abstract

Background: The opposition otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence presence) refers to the structural type of antonyms and represents basic notions in philosophical, scientific and everyday knowledge.  Generalization of modern conceptual, methodological and terminological researches makes it possible to develop theoretical foundations of cognitive studies and to practically apply various new methods to language material analysis.

Purpose: The purpose is to analyze antonyms otsutstviye – prisutstviye in the etymological aspect and to reveal deep relations of the words on the basis of their semantic interpretation, to trace the development and changes of grammatical forms, and to make conclusions as to contemporary meaning of the notions. The research is conducted within the paradigm of cognitive linguistics and presents a topical problem since it is connected with perception, comprehension and experience of a person who is trying to get to know themselves and the world around. 

Results:  Notions otsutstviye – prisutstviye are basic for understanding a number of other notions directly connected with a certain ethnos. For a native speaker of Russian the notions otsutstviye – prisutstviye and otsutstviye – nalichiye (lack – availability) are fundamental in both philosophical and everyday meaning. These oppositions reveal etymological roots and connections with the words sut’, suschestvovat’, byt’, bytiye, nalichiye, litso. Mental importance of the abstract notions under consideration has been preserved as proved by the data on the frequency of use of lingual representations of the notions otsutstviyeprisutstviye.  

Discussion:

The genetic relationship of otsutstviyeprisutstviye   is most significant for cognitive studies of the notion otsutstviye and its lingual representations in any discourse. It is also logical to claim that the notion otsutstviye (absence) occupies prior positions in the studies of the abovementioned abstractions since it is proved by available lingual and mental representations.

Keywords: cognitive linguistics, the methods of the etymological analysis and the semantic interpretation, the notions otsutstviyeprisutstviye (absence presence).

Vitae

Olga Radchuk, Candidate of Science (Philology), Assistant Professor of the Slavic Languages Department H.S. Skovoroda. Kharkiv National Pedagogical University. Her areas of research interests include cognitive linguistics, categorical linguistics, psycholinguistics, ethnolinguistics and linguo-culturology.

Correspondence: radchuk.o.v@ukr.net.


Article.

Ольга Радчук

УДК 811.161.1’1

THE URGENCY OF GENETIC PROXIMITY OF THE OPPOSITION OF OTSUTSTVIYE (ABSENCE) – PRYSUTSTVIYE (PRESENCE) FOR COGNITIVE STUDIES OF NOTION OTSUTSTVIYE (ABSENCE)

 

Із застосуванням методу інтерпретації семантики та етимологічного аналізу автором розглянуто абстрактні опозити ‘відсутність - присутність’. На основі встановлених генетичних зв’язків цієї антонімічної пари простежено розвиток та зміну їхньої семантики та граматичної експлікації. Доведено, що представлені поняття мають соціокультурну детермінацію, а поняття ‘відсутність’ є психологічним ключем для когнітивного розуміння багатьох дефініцій.

Ключові слова: когнітивна лінгвістика, методи інтерпретації семантики та етимологічного аналізу, поняття ‘відсутність - присутність’.

 

A.A. Potebnya’s words about the fact that everything in a language can be explained only through its etymology, serve as guidelines for studying each word and each grammar form in comparison and diachronically. On the basis of historical and psychological cognition, the scholar concluded that a person, as an individual and a member of the society, and modern culture as well as language result from a number of layers. Thus it is necessary to conduct a linguistic analysis proceeding from the present to the unknown past, “to take off a layer after layer from the modern language, without omitting any steps (Potebnya). In our point, this gradual character of research will help to tie together all invisible threads between a thought and a word in order to comprehend the inner form of the notions otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence – presence).

The opposition otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence presence) refers to the structural type of antonyms and represents basic notions in philosophical, scientific and everyday knowledge that can be viewed within the paradigm of cognitive theories. Though Russian antonomy has been often described in lexicographic sources and the opposition otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence – presence) is represented as an antonymous pair in all available dictionaries of Russian antonyms, it has not been subjected to profound study in the framework of modern cognitive research.

Generalization of conceptual, methodological and terminological researches available in modern linguists’ works (A.Ye. Kibrik 2015, Ye.S. Kubryakova 2004, N.S. Kudryavtseva 2013, L.M. Lescheva 2015, D. Geeraerts 2006, W. Moser 2014) makes it possible to develop theoretical foundations of studying cognitive categories, notions, models and to practically apply various new methods of language material analysis with a wide range of dispersion.

The aim of the article is to analyze this pair of antonyms in the etymological aspect on the basis of their semantic interpretation, to reveal deep relations of the words, to trace the development and changes of grammatical forms, and to make conclusions as to contemporary meaning of the notions in the system of scientific knowledge. The research into abstract notions otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence – presence) is conducted within the paradigm of cognitive linguistics and presents a topical problem since it is connected with perception, comprehension and experience of a person who is trying to get to know himself and the world around.

Lingual explication description of the specific representation otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence – presence) otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence – presence) is impossible without different interpretations on the socio-cultural basis. We share the opinion of L.M. Lescheva that “cognitive linguistics attempts to make a word semantic analysis of holistic nature, that is, to appeal to some wholesome mental construct that is perceived as a whole,  supplying those details that are absent in the dictionary definition and providing individual pragmatic interpretation” (Lescheva 416) (our translation – O.R.).

To study these language phenomena, alongside with the method of interpretation, we use etymological analysis whose application is based on A.A. Potebnya’s theory about the word inner form. “A.A. Potebnya’s theory about the word inner form, which is in fact the theory about the relations of the thought and language, recognizes the objective, that is, general meaning of the inner form while a vague, dark thought (or even the intention of a thought) is totally subjective. This subconscious thought reflects the image of an object rich in different attributes and perceived through the attributes, one of them becoming the word inner form” (Kudryavtseva 72) (our translation – O.R.).

Heuristic approach to studying linguistic phenomena has become topical in the methodological aspect of the modern cognitive science development. “By using etymological analysis and the method of semantic reconstruction in the context of prototypical approach it becomes possible to consider the fundamental categories of human psychology that belong to different areas of knowledge in the cognitive aspect; and new perspectives to empirical studies of the ways of natural languages impact on the development of worldview categories are opened” (Kudryavtseva 76). It should be noted that prototypical analysis presupposes a descriptive approach to lexical meaning studies and is based on previous traditional theoretical statements.

In our opinion, etymological analysis of the vocabulary with philosophical categorical semantics can be used within a framework of prototype theory. To single out prototypes that reflect the whole concrete ethnic and cultural experience, it becomes necessary to establish the word inner form, to define the nuclear attribute which has motivated forming new nominations.

A.A. Potebnya’s statement that any linguistic form is motivated and reflects the structure behind, is fundamental for late XIX- early XX century linguists and modern cognitologists in the research into language signs. The further development of the theory about language sign meaning in the concept of the founder of the psychological direction in linguistics, connected with human and social evolution, extralinguistic factors impact and developing abstract cognition, is traced in the works of the linguists of other theoretical directions. Working out the cognitive approach to language studies, A.Ye. Kibrik noted that F. De Saussure, the founder of the sociological direction in linguistics, took account of only primary combinations in the sign arbitrariness. A.Ye. Kibrik claims: “Generally speaking, the sign arbitrariness for Saussure was limited to the phonetic form of root words (roots), though derivatives already possess obvious semantic and, consequently, cognitive motivation (studied by traditional etymology), to say nothing of a wide range of various structures, modern analogues of the traditional sign (structural grammar according to Fillmore (Fillmore, Kay 1993; Croft 2001), among which root words make up just one archaic structural type .(Kibrik 32).

Thus, proceeding from the theory of motivation, it becomes possible to explain concrete representations and transformations of abstract notions in discourse practice. The transfer of information of a certain ethnos in the continuum, the so called social and cultural transfer, is connected with the expansion or narrowing of the notion semantic meaning. According to A.Ye. Kibrik, in the ideas of the representatives of structuralism at the new stage of the development of linguistics, various oppositions are established and the relation of language and thought, about which A.A. Potebnya wrote, is also traced.

When describing the notion of reversible markedness and its significance for asymmetry typological descriptions in the article “Cognitive approach to language”, A.Ye. Kibrik mentions an extract from the correspondence of N. Trubetskoy and R. Yakobson which proves our suppositions: “Replying to N.S. Trubetskoy’s remark in his letter dated 31.08. 1930 that “obviously, any (and maybe not any?) phonological correlation acquires, in language consciousness, the form of opposing some feature to its absence (or some attribute maximum to its minimum)”, Yakobson writes: “I believe that it (the idea of Trubetskoy) will be significant not only for linguistics but also for ethnology and the history of culture, and such historical and cultural correlations as life and death, freedom and its absence, sin and goodness, holidays and week days etc can always be limited to the relations not a, and it is important to establish what is an attribute for every epoch, group, people etc” (Kibrik 34) (our translation – O.R.). We think that notions otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence and presence) are basic for understanding a number of other notions, both purely linguistic and socio-cultural directly connected with a certain ethnos and native speakers (for instance, lexical lacunas).

We suggest considering genetic relations of the notions otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence presence) to study the abstract notion otsutstviye (absence) in a cognitive aspect.

The antonymous pair prisutstviye – otsutstviye (presence – absence) is mentioned in M.R. L’vov’ “The Dictionary of Russian Antonyms” under Number 806 and the corresponding verbal pair otsutstvovat’ – prisutstvovat’ is presented under Number 807 (L’vov .314). Since we are mainly interested in the notion absence we have thought it necessary to foreground it and rearranged the words in the given pairs.

Derivatives otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence – presence) are antonyms as a result of joining contradictory prefixes от- and при- to the same root.  Prefix от- dates back from common Slavic preposition отъ, expressing various relations: spatial, temporal, object, attributive, causative. The correlative preposition от is used with the Genetive case and that explains the syntagmatic relations of the notion otsutstviye – its combination with nouns in the Genitive case. For example, absence (of what?) – of space, time, object, definer or cause etc. Prefix при- also originated from a common Slavic preposition. The use of preposition при exclusively with the Prepositional case somewhat limits the use of the words with that prefix. Since the main meaning of prefix при- is ‘joining’, the word prisutstviye can be used in phrases determining the form of the noun in Genitive and Prepositional case. Thus, in phrases with head words otsutstviye and prisutstviye the appearance of a dependant word in the mentioned case forms is predictable, and the relations between the head word and its dependant refer to the noun government. The semantics of those prefixes allows us to suppose that the above mentioned opposites possess a big potential for spreading in Slavic ethnos socio-cultural continuum and for numerous realizations in the discourse.

Antonymous nouns otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence – presence) and corresponding antonymous verbs otsutstvovat’ – prisutstvovat’ are related derivationally. The verbs with prefixes have more numerous derivational antonyms than nouns. Structural types of antonyms otsutstviye – prisutstviye and otsutstvovat’ – prisutstvovat’ are united into pairs on the ground of the common root –sut-, which helps to reveal semantic relations of opposition.

The verb prisutstvovat’ means ‘to be somewhere at some time’ and has been fixed in the dictionaries of the Russian language since the beginning of XVIII century. It is formed with the help of verbal suffix ова-ть from Old Russian noun prisut’stvo that means presence. The noun prisut’stvo is derived from the third person present of the verb byti – sut’. The same stem served as the basis for Old Slavonic present participle suschiy meaning existing. In its turn the participle prisuschiy was formed on its basis with the help of the prefix при- and later it became perceived in Russian as the adjective meaning “characteristic of somebody or something”.

The semantics of the word sut’ is defined as “something main, essential, the basis of something”. The modern meaning of the word has been known in Russian since the first half of XVIII century. As it has been said, the word sut’ resulted from the third person plural present of the verb byti. The paradigm consisted of the forms: I yesm’, thou yesi, he yest’, we yesm’, you yeste, they sut’. The form sut’ expressed ‘what is there’, consequently the meaning “the most important” appeared. The form has been preserved in the phraseological unit nye sut’ vazhno (not very important). In modern Russian the form sut’ acquired substantial character and may be used as a noun, for instance, v etom sostoit sut’ dela or po suti dela. The verb byti has preserved only the form of the 3d person singular yest’ which began to be used with the meaning imeyetsya for both singular and plural and as a link verb is sometimes used in present. In Old Russian the negative form ne + yest gave rise to the form nest’ which is used in some idioms: nest’ proroka, nest’ chisla.

In Old Russian on the basis of the word sut’ there was formed the noun with the suffix -ств-o sut’stvo (“nature, essence”). The word suschestvo dates back to Old Slavonic susch’stvo that also has the same meaning. From the word sut’ there developed Old Slavic present participle suschiy – existing (sch developed from tj). In its turn the participle suschiy penetrated into Russian in the XI century as manuscripts certify and is perceived as bookish with the meaning “available”. Thus it is referred to the word nalichiye (presence) which is opposed to the word otsutstviye (absence).

Antonymous pair of nalichiye otsutstviye (availability – lack) is placed under Number 502 in the 9th edition of M.R. L’vov’s “The Dictionary of Russian Antonyms” and is illustrated with the examples from fiction. In the dictionary entry there is given an example of using head words in the Nominative case and words in the Genitive case (Nalichiye dorog – otsutstviye dorog) (availability of roads – lack of roads) as well as an example of using head words in the Prepositional case (v nalichiyi  v otsutstvii) (L’vov .214).

The lexical meaning of the word nalichiye – availability, existence – shows that it belongs to proto-Slavic vocabulary by its root. It is derived from Old Slavic nalik + the suffix –ий-e (nalitso, litsom). In Russian dialects there is form nalik in the meaning “available”. The word nalichiye is found in Russian manuscripts of the XI century and developed from the prepositional phrase na lik, where lik is originally “what is seen, what is available”. From nalik with the help of the suffix -н there was formed the adjective nalichnyi “available” and has been fixed in the dictionaries since XVIII century.

The word lik is Slavic in its origin. It is necessary to note that in proto-Slavic there existed three forms of the word: masculine – lik, feminine – lika, neuter – liko and the form litse in which the sound [k] is palatalized into [ts] according to the first palatalization of velar consonants. The meaning of all those forms was “what is seen” “the exact image of the face”. The word liki is used in Russian dialects with the meaning “cheeks”. The verb likovat’sya – “to greet each other by pressing one’s cheek to the other person’s cheek” – dates back from it. The lexical unit lik has been used in Russian with the meanings “face”, “facial side”, “external appearance”, “icon” and the adjective “similar”. In Modern Russian the set expression vyvernut’ nalitso (to turn inside out) is used in the direct meaning and metaphorically. Since time immemorial and up to now icons have depicted saints and martyrs, and in Modern Russian there is a phrase liki svyatykh (pictures of saints).

Parallel to the development of the forms and meanings of substance lik there have developed verbal derivatives. From the proto-Slavic verbal root lik- “to mark, to leave a trace”, “to make visible” there have developed the verb lichity the initial meaning of which was “to unmask”, “to reveal the real face”, “to make a correspondence” and later developed the meaning “to believe”. The word ulika as a derivative from the noun lika has been fixed in dictionaries since the XVIII century in the meaning “what makes something obvious, a proof of guilt”. From the noun ulikas with the help of the suffix -и-ти (к is changed into ч before и) the verb ulichity is derived and after the loss of the final unstressed -и by a pair of verbs: ulichit’ (Perfective Aspect, “to prove guilty”) and ulichat’ (Imperfective aspect, “to try to supply evidence, to find proofs). The initial meaning explains the phraseological unit zametat’ slyedy which is a phraseological unity as it can be used as a free unity as well as having the meaning “not to leave evidence”, “the absence of evidence”. Words prilichnyi (appropriate) and razlichnyi (various) are also cognates.

The conducted etymological analysis and partial prototypical description of the notions otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence –presence) visibly demonstrate the language impact on people’s thinking which is reflected in the development of the words inner forms. A.A. Potebnya remarked that at the early stages of language development when the word inner form was etymologically transparent and produced certain associations, thinking lacked behind language development, and thought was submitted to a word. Philosophical statement “The being determines consciousness”, which serves as the basis of dialectical cognition, proves the conclusion of the scholar once again.

In the above mentioned row of etymological cognates only bytiye (being) refers to philosophical terms. Bytiye in its narrow interpretation is equal to existence. “According to Heidegger, being originates from the negation of nothing while nothing allows anything existing to “immerse, that is why being is revealed. In order to appear being needs existence” (Quoted by: Filisofskiy slovar’ 57) (our translation – O.R.). Heidegger believes that the sense of being can be revealed only through available human existence. So he asks a question: “What can be done if the absence of the connection of being with human existence and inattentive attitude to this absence determine modern world more and more?” (Quoted by: Filisofskiy slovar’ 57) (our translation – O.R.). The scholar concludes that being loses its sense as existence and any transfer is possible only because it includes the notion nothing. Being first becomes a metaphysical problem only when and where the link verb to be is used. They have never asked the question what a material thing is and what a thing in our consciousness is. Thus, the philosophical category bytiye (being) which has led to disputes since Aristotle to nowadays, means first of all human existence and may be defined as “I am”. In modern existentialism the philosophical term ‘nalichnoye bytiye’ (available being) means ‘existence’. Available being is human existence since it is most accessible to our cognition.

The words bytiye and nalichiye are closely related genetically and are included in the same synonymous row where the word prysuschyi, fixed in V.I. Dal’s dictionary, is explained (Dal’ 2010: 533). Alongside with the abovementioned word, the verb prysutstvovat’ (to be present) is defined:to be, to be present in person, to be a witness to something, to be aware; to have a meeting, to be a member of the jury or to preside in court or some board, place’ (our translation – O.R.). The same dictionary article includes the verbal noun prysutstviye (presence): “being somewhere, taking part in a meeting due to somebody’s post or place of work; courtroom or any room where meetings take place and where members of the board are present; its meeting , its period of time. Eto bylo v moyom prysutstvii (It happened in my presence). Prysutstviye ustroyeno za steklyannymi dvermi (The meeting room is behind the glass doors). Prysutstviye nachalos’, otkryto, zakryto (the meeting has begun, or is open, or is closed). Recrutskoye prysutstviye – recruiting office. Prysutstviye dukha – total and conscious self-control during some sudden and difficult circumstances” (Dal’ 533) (our translation – O.R.)

Dal’s dictionary also fixes the word nalychnyk, which went out of use in Modern Russian in the meaning of “available person, the one that is present, as opposed to an absentee, netchik, nebytchik”. The second meaning of the word has been preserved: “some jambeau in the building, decoration for something; plat bands near doors and windows; the plate with a keyhole; something that covers a person’s face; a mask; a cover to hide a face; a ski-mask or something else to protect the face from cold; a mosquito net mask” (Dal’  403) (our translation – O.R.).

Though in Dal’s dictionary the word otsutstviye is not mentioned, description of its opposites (prysutstviye, nalichiye) make a reference of it. This once again emphasizes that for Russian language mentality prysutstviye and nalichiye (presence and availability) were more significant than otsutstviye (absence) of somebody or something. 

For a native speaker of Russian the notions otsutstviye – prisutstviye (absence – presence) and otsutstviye – nalichiye (lack – availability) are fundamental in both philosophical and everyday meaning. These oppositions reveal etymological roots and connections with the words sut’, suschestvovat’, byt’, bytiye, nalichiye, litso. The words with these roots are found in prayers which Russians say at most important moments of their lives and which are preserved in their souls everyday: “Отчє наш, ижє єси на нєбєсєх, да святится имя Твоє”, “Хлєб наш насущный даждь нам днєсь. The Russian linguistic mentality is based on the persons striving to comprehend their otsutstviyeprisutstviye (absence presence) on the Earth and their spiritual searches and attempts to consider themselves as a part of the Universe.

Mental importance of the abstract notions under consideration has been preserved from the times immemorial till nowadays. It can be proved by the data on the frequency of use of lingual representations of the abstract notions otsutstviyeprisutstviye.

In the authoritative edition of the dictionary of frequency made up on the basis of the National Corpora of Russian, among 100 of the most frequent Russian words, our attention was attracted by the words that are representations of the abstract notions otsutstviyeprisutstviye. The third position in the list is occupied by the word nye (no), the sixth one is occupied by the verb byt’ (be) and the 100th is occupied by the negative pronoun nychto (nothing) (Chastotnyy slovar’). The supplied examples cover 37 per cent of all texts (fiction, newspaper, technical, business documents and scientific) which certifies to data reliability.

The word nye (no) denoting negation in philosophy, logics and linguistics, is placed several positions ahead of the verb byt’ (be) in the list of the most frequently used words. It is another proof of our hypothesis that the notion otsutstviye is a psychological key to comprehending a number of definitions, both linguistic (for instance, grammatical) and common for all humanity. The verb byt’ (be) is socially and culturally predetermined. We mean the existential sense of the verb byt’ that is important for social and cultural interaction. Within the semantic structure of the verb there is singled out a categorical lexical seme “being, existence” which is directly connected with the notion prisutstviye (presence). N.Yu. Shvedova claims that the verb byt’ (be) is most polyfunctional due to its vague abstract semantics. In contrast to polysemy where one meaning is somehow derived from another, the polyfunctional nature excludes such derivation and instead ensures the equal status of meanings (Shvedova 11).

Negative pronoun ничто (‘nychto’, nothing), in our opinion, connects the notions otsutstviyeprisutstviye since the linguocultural meaning is expressed by the seme represented in most cases by the root morpheme (here что ‘being, existence’) while grammatical, in our case, word-forming meaning, is expressed through affixes (prefix ни-). It is possible to trace the relationship of language and world mapping in this word due to the transparent inner form of the word. Here the following reflections of U. Eco seem appropriate to us: “It is the substance of the form that ensures the evident availability. What refers to ‘emic’ is meaningful but the marker of the meaning is ‘ethic’. Or, to say better, the empty space between two things becomes meaningful only if all the three – yes, no and emptiness are interconnected. Thus, a linguist (or, to be more exact, a semiologist) should not ask questions what is present and what is absent: whether they are ways of thinking or just hypotheses about the ways of thinking. At the level of ‘ethic’ they are material factors. However, a philosopher, for instance, Leibniz, is sure to ask a question if their presence and absence is connected with the presence of God in full being or the absence of God, that is, with Nothing ” (Eco 19) (our translation – O.R.).

Nowadays ‘nychto’ (nothing) as an object of metaphysics draws attention of researchers in various fields of science. The scholars are interested not only in the existence of this abstract thing but also in its potential realization. The linguistic representation of nychto (nothing) is wide in the texts of fiction. Its discourse references are so varied and contradictory that in some cases nychto (nothing) represents otsutstviye (absence) and in some other cases – prisutstviye (presence), though all the three notions are abstract.

So, quoting U. Eco again: “All understanding of being happens through language and no science can explain how language functions because only through language we can comprehend how the world functions” (Eco 24) (our translation – O.R.).

To conclude, we consider the genetic relationship of the opposites otsutstviyeprisutstviye (absence presence) most significant for cognitive studies of the notion otsutstviye and its lingual representations in any discourse. It is also logical to claim that the notion otsutstviye (absence) is forwarded and occupies prior positions in the studies of the abovementioned abstractions since it is proved by available lingual and mental representations.

References. 

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Надійшла до редакції 10 вересня 2017 року.