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Linguocognitive foundations of teaching English negation


Negation is a fundamental category in English that permeates the entire structure of the language. Learning negation is an important aspect of comprehensive language acquisition. We substantiate the possibility of teaching negation on a linguocognitive basis using principles and practices obtained in the framework of cognitive linguistics. Insight into the wide range of language means of expressing negation and its functional characteristics in English are provided. Apart from that, the structure of the semantic category of negation, its prototypical core, and the near and far periphery are described. Each of the functional characteristics of negation – absence, inconsistency, negative assessment, negative communicative reaction – is examined in detail. We provide examples of activities aimed at teaching the aforementioned functions of negation and peculiar properties of such teaching. Apart from that, it analyzes the advantages of the linguocognitive approach to teaching each of the functional characteristics of negation, as well as the cognitive mechanisms underlying them. We consider the possible difficulties of teaching nega-tion and proposes ways to overcome them. It provides evidence for the high integrative and expli-cative potential of the linguocognitive approach to teaching negation in English which helps to combine the successful principles and methods proposed in both the traditional approach and the communicative language teaching.


negation; the category of negation; linguocognitive approach; cognitive linguistics; linguodidactics; communicative language teaching

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