Наслеђе 48 (2021), стр. 13-23

АУТОР(И): Violeta Z. Stojičić

Е-АДРЕСА: violeta.stojicic@filfak.ni.ac.rs

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DOI: 10.46793/NasKg2148.013S


The paper discusses the phenomenon of lexical cloning in English, formally referred to as ‘contrastive focus reduplication’. This phenomenon is most notable in conversational English, especially in informal register. In the literature, lexical cloning is defined as a modifier reduplication of a lexical expression. Namely, a lexeme is duplicated in such a manner that the clone serves as a modifier with a contrastive focus, whose function is to accentuate the unambiguous sense. As explained in Ghomeshi et al. (2004), a lexical clone specifies a true, real, default, salient, or prototypical denotation of the repeated item. However, it has been demonstrated that lexical clones are context dependent as they  are not quite predictable or interpretable in isolation. Accordingly, the phenomenon is not purely lexicosemantic, but rather lexicopragmatic, since speakers employ it to reinforce meaning and prevent misinterpretation. The aspects and elements of lexical cloning with adjectives will be analyzed within a sample of utterances from conversational English, which includes instances such as I thought they were kinda purpley. Like purple purple, not white with a purpleish tint added. We will also investigate the pragmatic phenomena of lexical adjustment and motivated redundancy as a mechanism behind cloning.


lexical cloning, contrastive focus reduplication, lexical pragmatics, lexical adjustment, motivated redundancy


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