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Socio-cultural approach to cognitive-discursive activity of language speakers is analyzed. The scientific problem of representation of human beings as members of societies and cultures in language is defined within cognitive linguistics that gives insights into interpretive activity of language speakers from the point of view of cognitive and linguistic mechanisms of meaning-making. This approach is considered to be relevant for the typology of context of knowledge as a two-dimensional unity: context of collective knowledge and context of socio-cultural knowledge. They, in turn, are manifested via social and discourse practices that are activated by language speakers in the process of discourse construction. These contexts of knowledge as well as the practices are dependent on conceptual and thematic domains that reflect experience human beings possess. It is argued that socio-cultural specificity of discourse is revealed through contexts of knowledge. This claim rejects non-verbal basis of discourse construction. A fundamental role of individual and collective knowledge in the process of discourse processing is defined, as well as the idea of socio-cultural discourse specificity. Cognitive variation and the addressee-factor are exemplified. It is concluded that socio-cultural approach and the study of discourse outlines new perspectives in socio-cultural turn of cognitive linguistics.


context of collective knowledge; context of socio-cultural knowledge; cognitive variation; socio-cultural discourse specificity; socio-cultural and discourse practices

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Section of issue

Intercultural communication

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