Semantic uncertainty, the theory of prototypes and language games: topics of the lecture “Philosophical foundations of “semantic uncertainty” in translation”

Semantic uncertainty, the theory of prototypes and language games: topics of the lecture “Philosophical foundations of “semantic uncertainty” in translation”

On June 27, within the framework of academic and methodological online seminar of the Foreign Languages Department of the Agrarian and Technological Institute of RUDN University, invited lector Angelo Loreti (Senior Lecturer, Department of Philosophy of Language and Communication, Faculty of Philosophy, Lomonosov Moscow State University (MSU)) spoke on “Philosophical foundations of “semantic indeterminacy” in translation”.

The problem of vague boundaries of semantic classes characterizes even the most familiar terms. Translation theory and practice examines philosophical basis underlying the notions of meaning and semantic indeterminacy focusing on Aristotelian theory in semantics and the “prototype theory”, i.e. discussion of a general theory of natural categories developed in the 1970s by E. Rosch et al. The theory of language games (that is, the concept of language-games referring to the entirety of a language itself, “consisting of language and the actions into which it is woven”) is, particularly, considered to be one of the fundamental principles of this theory.

“The prototype theory offers a principled approach to the exemplification of form-meaning relationships within language and to the development of language teaching exercises that focus on specific aspects of the language system”, — Angelo Loreti (Ph.D., Senior Lecturer, Department of Philosophy of Language and Communication, Faculty of Philosophy, Lomonosov Moscow State University (MSU)).

Relevant philosophical issues at the intersection of linguistics and philosophy should be addressed within foreign languages teaching and learning proficiency and translation in particular.

“A very interesting and useful scientific and methodological seminar. It was very exciting to learn more about the classic theory of categorization and certain difficulties of translating lexical units from one language to another. I would like to thank Dr. Angelo Loreti for his wonderful lecture. Thank you for the experience! ” — Anastasia Kostomarova, Foreign Languages Department, Agrarian and Technological Institute, Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia (RUDN University).

For reference

The lecture convened the staff of the Foreign Languages Department of the Agrarian and Technological Institute, Ph.D. students and students enrolled in Translator” program at the Agrarian and Technological Institute and the Institute of Medicine (up to 51 attendees).


Languages — the English language, the Italian language & the Russian language.

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