Silence as a Discourse Construction in Sociolinguistics

Publication type Article
Status Published
Occupation: Depatment Head, M. Lomonosov Moscow State University
Affiliation: Lomonosov Moscow State University
Address: Russian Federation, Moscow
Address: Russian Federation
Journal nameSotsiologicheskie issledovaniya
EditionIssue 12

The article uses three main concepts of discourse (conversation) analysis school as a key area in modern sociolinguistics (a preconstruct as a trace in the discourse of the preceding epochs, supplying material for the formation of discourse; interdiscourse as the relations that a discourse has to what is «already heard», «already present»; intradiscourse as the operation of discourse with respect to itself, that is, the phenomena of coreference, which generates the main thread of discourse) to build a typology of forms of silence as constructs of an ending reality, in which the conceptual beginning of a new reality is laid (oblivion, omission, hidden meanings, parables, euphemisms, silent scene). Oblivion is regarded as a spontaneous mnemonic mechanism and as a technology of instrumental influence on memory, that is, the ideologization of memory paralysis is analyzed as the oldest method of disinformation, doomed in the modern global space to reduced forms. The genesis of hidden meanings is found both in the objective properties of the langue and parole phenomenon and in the subjective intentions of the utterer. Aesopian language is interpreted as an artistic system of paralyses and concealment, worked out over two and a half millennia of confrontation between men of letters and authorities. Political euphemisms as a soft way to deal with unpleasant subjects are considered as a means of tabooing of the modern politics. The mute scene is interpreted as meta silence, the synthesis of all possible forms and figures of silence. In the article to analyze the unsaid as a key  discourse construct, demonstrate the illusory nature of the transparency of meanings in a text, and explain the principle of discourse being open to multiple interpretations, explains the mechanisms of linking separate discourse constructs with spots of silence, which, while explicitly devoid of any semantics, are implicitly filled with a multiplicity of meanings. 

Keywordspre-construct, inter-discourse, intra-discourse, implicity, explicity, interpretation, memory ideologization, collective memory, loss of meaning, disinformation
Publication date09.01.2019
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