In a previous study aimed at outlining the organization of affective categories in Romanian (Cf. Sauciuc, 2006), several cases were identified where Romanians made use of two or more competing linguistic terms applied to what appeared to be the same conceptual configuration. One such case is taken into consideration in this 10-study follow-up investigation, whose purpose was to obtain empirical data for establishing the conceptual configuration underlying the two natural language categories dragoste (‘love 1’) and iubire (‘love 2’), envisaging more specific objectives, such as examining: 1) To which extent the descriptions of the two Romanian categories overlap or show differences. 2) To which extent each (or both) of the two Romanian categories overlap with the equivalent English category love, as described in the scientific literature. 3) To which extent both or only one of the two dimensions of prototypicality – horizontal vs. vertical – are needed for the description of basic-level categories, taking into account the specific properties of these in contrast with those featured by superordinate-level categories. The present research had therefore a double focus, on both the horizontal and the vertical dimension of categorization, reflecting two competing views on the prototypical approach to categorization: A. On the vertical dimension, researchers are trying to identify the conceptual organization of a superordinate or basic level category by looking at the subordinate level categories that might be subsumed to it. B. On the horizontal dimension, concerning the differentiation of categories at the same level of inclusiveness, researchers are interested in the most representative attributes. This must not be confounded with the attempt to identifying the set of necessary and sufficient features of definition deciding category membership, as in the traditional view on categorization. As a consequence, the design of the tasks included in the present investigation was informed by theories, principles, concepts and methods pertaining to the prototype approach to categorization, as well as to the rich cognitive linguistics framework, with a focus on cognitive models.
Studii De Lingvistica Si Filologie Romanica: Hommages Offerts À Sanda Reiheimer Ripeanu, 2007, p. 494-517
categorization; conceptual representation; empirical data; emotions; love