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Semantic Deviation In Pride And Prejudice English Language Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: English Language
Wordcount: 3660 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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Jane Austin was an English novelist. Her books are notable for the wit, social observation and insights into the lives of early 19th century women. She was born in 1775 in Hampshire. She began to write when she was a teenager. Her first novel was “Sense and Sensibility” which was published in 1811.The second novel she wrote was “Pride and Prejudice”. This novel became very famous and was appreciated. Her next novel “Mansfield Park” was published in 1814, and then “Emma” in 1816.In 1816 Jane became ill due to Addison’s disease. She died in Winchester on 18 July 1817. The two novels ‘Persuasion’ and ‘Northanger Abbey’ were published after her death. And a final novel was left incomplete.

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“Pride and Prejudice” was the most popular novel of Jane Austin. The story of the novel takes place in early nineteenth century. Critics praised Jane Austen’s characterization and portrayal of everyday life. Human weakness is a prominent element in this novel. Austin made use of irony to expose foolishness and hypocrisy. Dialogue plays an important role in Pride and Prejudice. Each characters speech is appropriate. From the speech it is revealed that what they are like. Elizabeth’s talk is direct and outspoken, Mr. Bennett’s speech is sarcastic, Mr. Collin’s speeches are very long and boring, Lydia’s speeches are carefree and not serious.

The incidences in “Pride and Prejudice” can be related to every day life i.e. embarrassments, foolishness, falling in love, realizing own mistakes, etc. Austen’s works possess a timeless quality, which makes her stories and themes as relevant today as they were two hundred years ago.

Deviation means depart from an established course or normal standards. There are many types of deviation like syntactic or grammatical deviation, lexical deviation, graphological deviation, phonological deviation, and semantic deviation. In this research the main focus is on Semantic deviation. Semantic deviation shows that a word or phrase can have many different meanings. A word can be taken in different contexts. The real meaning can be different from apparent meaning. Semantic deviation includes irony, paradox, metaphor, simile, pun, style.



Dr.Sarala Krishnamurthy examined the lexis of Selman Rushdie’s Midnight Children”s.The method she applied was both qualitative and quantitative. In this research she worked on the use of neologism, compound words, and borrowing in the novel. According to her examination the most important feature in Rushdie’s work is the use of neologism. The neologism is identified in two ways : morphological and borrowing. In the novel the Indian words are given affixation, such as Pajamas, phirangis. With these words affixation “s” is used to convert them into plural form. The second type of neologism used is the Indian suffix are attached to English words, such as cousin ji and sister ji. The suffix ji in Urdu and Hindi is attached to any noun.

The third type is when with English root morpheme, Hindi root morpheme is attached, such as: Paan shop, hot channa, Indian fauj. In these words Paan, channa and fauj are Hindi morphemes which are attached to English morphemes. Compound words are also formed by taking words from both the languages. The example of compound words is: dia lamp, where dia is the equivalent of the word lamp. The suffix “y” is also used with words, such as: shivery, glass cloudy, house wifery.

The affixation “ed” is also used to create neologisms. Rushdie creates many adjectival forms by adding affix “ed”. The examples are: One eye browed, many headed, etc. The affixation “ing” is also used, which leads to the formation of compound words, such as: lip jutting, crazy sounding. The notable point is that all the examples given are used for the first time in Midnight’s Children and this extend the resources of English language.

In this novel the compound words are formed in different ways. The ways are unusual collocation, co-joined words, word clusters, and noun phrases. The example of the each way is given below:

Unusual collocation:

1. Biriyanis of determination

2. Carrot and stick affair

Co-joined words:

1. whatsitsname – what is its name

2. Godknowswhat – God knows what

3. Talldarkhandsome – tall dark handsome

Word clusters:

1. they we should

2. patience wait

Noun Phrases:

1. two day long procession

2. losing national dice game

3. Going to pot

The last thing to be noted in the novel is borrowing. The words are borrowed from Urdu, such as: khansamaa, maulvi saab. The names of Hindu gods are also used, such as: ganesh, hanuman. The names of Hindi dishes, such as: lassi, khichri, ladoo are used in the novel. The names of Indian clothing: dupatta, kurtaa, pajama, are also made part of the novel. Indian expressions and the words of other languages that are spoken in India are also used in the novel. In the end Sarala concludes that these lexis are important because it is lexical deviation and the other reason she gives is that the usage of these words tell the world about the Indian word expressions.

Agemo, Oluwatosin Stella examined “The stylistic analysis of some selected poems of Wole Soyinka”. He mentioned that the writer makes use of unusual word order in the form of Anastrophe and parenthesis. Examples are:

“In vain your bangles cast charmed circles at my feet” (Abiku).

“Caught I was, foully” (Telephone Conversation).

This word order interrupts the normal syntactical flow of the sentence, to create emphasis and to capture the attention of the reader. The writer has also made use of word omission, i.e. ellipsis and asyndeton. Examples are:

“Must I weep for goats and cowries.”

For palm oil and sprinkled ask? (Abiku)

“I saw your jealous eye quench the Sea’s

Flourescence, dance on the pulie incessant” (Night)

This creates shortness of time, emphasis or ambiguity. The scheme of repetition is also used in the poems. Repetition is used deliberately for the sake of emphasis. It helps to grasp the attention of the reader. The lexico-syntactic choices i.e. similie and metaphor are also used in abundance in the poem. These are used to give clearness and liveliness to words. Examples are:


“I bear no bear no heart mercuric like the clouds” (Night).

“As lightning shrink to ant’s antenna” (To my first white hairs).


“I’ll be the suppliant snake coiled on the doorstep” (Abiku).

The comparison is made between two words that are different from each other and they are bond together to create similarity between them. Instances of hyperbole, hypernyms, onomatopoeia, synecdoche, pun, assonance, consonance are also present in the poem. The usage of these schemes and tropes provide musical effect and color to the poems. Graphological deviation is also present in the poem like capitalization, bold print, and spacing. All of these things found out together give effective meaning. To convey the meaning to the reader and to grasp their attention the language used should be meaningful. Soyinka use of language conveys the meaning to the reader that what the poet wants to convey. The stylistical devices help the poet to beautify and give rhythm to the text. By this analysis it is shown that there is a difference between poetic and non-poetic language.

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Bahaa-Eddin M. Mazid examined “A stylistic analysis of Larkin’s ‘Talking in Bed’. According to his analysis the lexical items, with different connotations and denotations, grammatical structures, categories all combine together to produce three main isotopies of the poem i.e. language, love and nature. These items also establish the cohesive chains and the three sub-worlds of the poem- the tenseless, present and past. In the poem an emotional linguistic predicament of a couple is encountered, who cannot communicate and who used to be honest. Now they are unable to speak the truth and to be nice. The thing which is more problematic is that there is no one to help and conjure them. This is the context of the poem, it tells about the interpersonal relation ships. The poem consists of twelve lines. The first stanza consists of two clauses. And the second stanza starts with adverbial clause “Lying together. The qualities and attributes associated with human beings are lasting only for a short time than those associated with natural objects and other phenomenon.”Talking in bed” is a metalinguitic poem. The poem is about the use, misuse and abuse of language. One isotopy that cross cuts the nature and the love isotopies is that of night. Thus, “in bed”, “lying together”, “dark towns” and “isolation” finds their ideal environment in the night. Night, sex and love are closely related with each other. The intimate style is filled with

ellipsis, nonverbal communication and private code characteristics. Human involvement is more obvious in the last two clauses in the poem. In the whole poem the theme is dark, tone is bleak with disappointment. Irony is also the dominant feature of the poem. There is a mismatch between imagination and reality.”Talking in bed” is as modern as “The Wasteland”. It is about the agony of alienation, the irony of senseless sex-“pillow-talk” that cannot be “easy” and bed partnership that can no longer be “honest” – the loss of faith in communion and the death of true or kind language. The poem is

true to its own genre and author.

In this the writer does “The brief stylistic analysis of The Great Gatsby”. The play describes the hollowness of the upper class. It also tells us about that what happened to the American dream. In the play Fitgerald made use of imagination and symbolism to present the moral history of his time.The use of symbolism made his work to connect the objective with the subjective. He starts the novel in the present, narrates the important events of the story. In chapter 4,6 and 7 the writer gradually reveals the story of Gatsby’s past. In chapter 9 the past and the present come together. The key to the structure of the novel is the combination of the first person narrative and the revelation of the past gradually. The two devices worked together perfectly. If anyone of these was not used than the meaning will not be delivered clearly. In section 1 of the play abstract nouns and many multi-syllable adjectives are used, such as: riotous (adj.) ¼Œ excursion (n.)¼Œprivileged (adj.) glimpse (n).The formal words are also used,such as exempt, register. The psychology of Nick is revealed by the use of multi-syllable adjectives. The sentence structure is complex. The internal complex and feelings of Nick are described in three sentences only in the first section of the play.

Long but simple sentences are used in the section 2.there is one subjective clause and several coordinate sentences. For example, “…Miss Baker had mentioned him at dinner and that…. …he stretched out his arms toward the dark water in a curious way, and, far as I was from him,…”.The simile is also used in “the Great Gatsby”. The sentence “Her voice is full of money” is a metaphor. The purpose of using metaphor is to give readers aesthetic sense. In the end the analyst concludes that the language used in the play is formal. And it appeals to the reader.

Dan McIntyre examined “The stylistic analysis of E.E.Cummings poem.”The title of the poem is “listen”. The poem is basically about the arrival of the spring and the happiness and joys it brings. On the other hand the poem also seems to be an address to the lover; the poet wants his lover to enjoy with him, the arrival of spring. The themes of spring, nature, sex and man are interred related with each other. The subject matter of the poem is not complex. There are many stylistic features present in the poem.

The lexical features of the poem are examined. The poem mostly consists of nouns and verbs. Most of the nouns are concrete and only two are abstract .i.e. dream and miracle. The verbs used create a sense of immediacy. All the verbs which are marked for tense are in the present tense. We have present simple verbs .i.e. barks, present progressive forms .i.e. are [eagerly], tumb/ling, and ‘o-p-e-n-i-n-g/are’. The poet also made use of adverb of manner, which conveys a sense of speed. The adverbs used are: (quickly), excitement (crazily, eagerly) and inevitability (irrevocably).Directive verbs are used to address to the other person .i.e. (listen, look, come (x2), run (x2), jump, shout, laugh, dance, cry, sing). These are used to request the addressee to enjoy the coming of the spring with the poet. For example, in the lines

‘run run/with me now’ and ‘sing)for it’s Spring’.

There is no neologism in the poem but some words are arranged in the poem in strange way. For example the word “wonderful” is divided in two lines, dividing it into two morphemes .i.e. wonder and ful. First the word gives the expression of noun “wonder” and if it is read again it seems to be the adjective “wonderful”.

The most striking effect in {listen} is the use of deviations. Throughout the poem graphological deviation is present. The poet has deliberately capitalized the words in the middle of the sentence. The last line of the poem is highly fore grounded because all the letters are capitalized. Grammatical deviation is also used in the poem. Punctuations are applied where they are not required. An example would be in lines 12 and 13 – ‘o-p-e-n-i-n-g/are(leaves;flowers)dreams’. Cummings has break grammatical conventions to convey the simultaneously coming thoughts. Due to which the groups of nouns run together without any punctuation. (E.g. lines 3 to 6 and line 22).the definite and indefinite references are within the same clause. i.e. ‘this a dog barks’. The possible explanation could be that the poet uses “this” to refer that he is talking about the particular dog and on the other hand he uses a to refer that he is not familiar with the dog.

Graphological parallelism is also used by the poet. All the first lines of the next stanza are separated by the above lines by double space. The poem has no rhyme scheme of regularity. There is no strict pattern adopted by the poet. In conclusion Cummings deliberately chooses to use such seemingly odd stylistic techniques in ‘(listen)’. Stylistic helps the reader to understand the things in the text which are otherwise not understandable easily.

Dominique Costa examined “A stylistical analysis of Thomas Hardy’s: The Ruined maid.” In the poem the lexical items used belong to variety of languages. The geographical, temporal, social dialects clearly appear in the poem. Terms such as “thee”, “thou” used belong to regional dialect. There occurrence is purposeful. Hardy used this device to draw the attention of the reader towards the characteristics of the country people. Expressions like “digging potatoes”, “spudding up docks” and “barton” belong to rural lexis. This enhances the young women social origin. The words like “bracelets”, “dress”, “gloves” which are associated with women are used frequently. Hardy uses expression related to feminity such as “my dear”, “delicate cheek”, “delicate face”. From this it is shown that the theme of woman hood is prevalent in the poem.

Conjunctions are also used frequently. The conjunctions such as “and”, “but” are significant. The poem is built in parallel structures; two types of parallelism within the sentences are also used. The examples of parallelism are:

In “The Ruined Maid” lexis, cohesion, syntax, sound plays a dominant role. References to the past and present are also constant ion the poem. The setting of the play is temporal.

Metin TÄ°MUÇÄ°N examined “A stylistic study to explore the language of poems”. The goal was to perceive the meaning and understanding the language of the text. The text which is taken into consideration is the poem of Siegfried Sassoon`s “The Rear-Guard” and Wilfred Owens’s “Anthem for Doomed Youth”. The paper not only focuses on analyzing the text but also argues in favor of exploiting language based approaches in literature. In Sassoon’s “The Rear-Guard” the poet uses the poetic language of violence. The poet has himself experienced the violence as a soldier in world war 2.the themes of the poem are violence, and the trenches of the war. On the other hand in the poem of Wilfred Owens’s “Anthem for Doomed Youth” the relations with family, army, poetry and Church are depicted. Sassoon and Owen both deal with the atrocities of the war. In “Anthem for Doomed Youth” in order to reveal the agonies, violence, silence of a family in mourning, sorrows of the people, Owen makes use of both the terms of army and church. In both the poems the words related with war are present i.e. guns, rapid rattle, stuttering rifles. Owen also uses the discourse of the church like: bells, prayers, mourning, choirs, candles, holly glimmers. In Owens poem we have lexical groupings of war and church. The main focus of the analysis was that how the words used convey the meaning to the reader. In “The Rear Guard’ the feelings of a person are described who has himself faced the atrocities of war and he thinks that war is evil and unjust. It destroys the lives of people. In Owens poem” Anthem for Doomed Youth” the poet by using linguistic devices gives the message and lesson to the world that war should be prohibited. The war is not an enjoyable thing; it destroys the lives of people, homes and countries.

Masanori Miyata examined “Types of linguistic devices in Oliver Twist”. The six types of deviation present in Oliver twist are taken under consideration. The phonological deviation is present in the dialogue of Gamfield, which shows typically substandard or vulgar language. The words of his speech are: acause(because),afore(before),nothink(nothing),etc. Graphological deviation is also part of the novel. The author uses parenthesis within the dialogue to reveal the inner thoughts of the character. For example:

“Have the goodness to look at me”, said Mr.bumble, fixing his eyes upon her. (If she stands such an eye as that, said Mr. Bumble to himself. She can stand anything….” (Mr. Bumble, XXXVII, 268)

Capital letters and dashes are also used within the dialogue. In the dialogue by Fagin, Fagin retorted Nancy with rage in capital letters. “WILL”. Neologisms are also invented in the play. i.e. Greenland, merry-go-rounder. Dicken invented special terms like: beadlehood, henpeckery, half-baptized. New compound words are formed by combining two lexical items with hyphens; like: psalm-singers, concept-making, surgeon’s-friend, and orange-peel.

Mr. Bumble add suffixes -er and -est. with adjectives in his dialogues, which normally proceed more and most in Standard English. Examples are: obstinater, ungratefullest, He also uses double superlatives i.e. most bare-facedest. Dickens also uses vague phrase; like: “certain soft nothings”. Oxymorons are also evident. For example: good unhealthy port, logically contradict but contextually consistent. Paradox like: “night so long, and yet so short”, are also applied by Dickens. Synecdoche, metaphor, simile all are the part of the play. Dickens ion his novel has used approximately all types of deviations, schemes, tropes and lexical features. Irony is prevalent throughout the novel. In conclusion Dickens creates new words and skillfully manipulates it in his novel.





3.1. Research Question:

To analyze the semantic deviation in Jane Austin’s novel “Pride and Prejudice”

3.2. Delimitation:

The text which is to be analyzed is Pride and Prejudice. It consists of 61 chapters, but the focus will be on first 25 chapters of the novel. The text will be analyzed semantically. The focus will be on semantic deviations used by the writer. The real meaning inherent in the apparent meaning will be focused.

3.3. Theoretical Framework:

Stylistics is the study of style of language. It describes the usage of language in speech, written works and public affairs. Deviations are a part of stylistic analysis. Deviation means depart from an established course or normal standards. There are many types of deviation, like semantic, syntactic, graphological, register and grammatical deviation. But the focus in this research is only on semantic deviation. The main points which would be under consideration during semantic analysis of the novel will be irony, metaphor, paradox, pun, style.


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