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Can Peripherality Support Centrality? Some empirical Evidence from Morphological Margins
Año del Documento
ES: Revista de filología inglesa, 2007, N.28, pags.121-143
This article puts forward the results of a survey on the process of creation and realization of initialisms (acronyms and alphabetisms) and abbreviations. This survey was devised to acquire a better understanding of a field of word formation which is usually neglected due to its unpredictable and language specific quality. The survey shows that customary use and background knowledge (i.e. social and individual factors) are determinant for the realization of these items, whereas other criteria, such as phonotactic possibilities, time saving principles, or the orthographic or semantic influence of already existing words, seem to be much less significant. Besides verifying that prototypes or central cases do play a role as points of reference for categorization judgements, the results of the survey evince a central principle of languages: they are dynamic instruments ultimately conditioned by their users and their communicative contexts.
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