English Mnemonic Lexicon: Constituent Structure and Verbalization Potential

Keywords: memory, mnemonic process, mnemonic lexicon, memory verbs, communicative context


This paper presents a study of the system of lexical devices used by English speakers to verbalize their personal memory experiences. The approach presented in the paper presupposes inclusion of non-narrative structures into the spectrum of language forms conveying mnemonic meanings and extends the latter so as to encompass the meanings of encoding, storage, retrieval and loss. The research is based on the hypothesis that lexical units expressing memory-related meanings in English constitute a specifically organized system. A variety of communicative contexts representing mnemonic situations are analyzed as to develop a typology of memory verbalizers in English, estimate their functional potential and role in objectifying personal memory experiences on the lexical level. The results confirm the original hypothesis and suggest that mnemonic lexicon as a linguistic reflection of the mnemonic faculty is an important and largely understudied element of the language – memory system.

Author Biographies

Irina Tivyaeva, Moscow City University, Russia

Irina Tivyaeva, Dr. phil. habil., is Full Professor with the Department of Linguistics and Translation Studies, Institute of Foreign Languages, Moscow City University, Russia. She teaches courses in linguistics, stylistics, intercultural communication, translation studies, and English as a foreign language. Her research interests include linguistic memory studies, cognitive linguistics, psycholinguistics, communication theory, translation studies, English for academic purposes. Irina Tivyaeva has published a monograph on linguistic coding of memory processes which has received several rewards from different foundations for academic excellence and innovation.

Olga Syomina, Tula State University, Russia

Olga Syomina, PhD, is Associate Professor with the Department of Linguistic and Translation Studies, Institute of Social Sciences and Humanities, Tula State University, Russia. Her teaching and research interests lie in the field of lexicology, lexicography and corpus linguistics, particularly, applied English lexicology and comparative English-Russian corpus studies. She has published a number of research articles on English word stock and lexical problems of translation.


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How to Cite
Tivyaeva, I., & Syomina, O. (2020). English Mnemonic Lexicon: Constituent Structure and Verbalization Potential. English Studies at NBU, 6(1), 29-68. https://doi.org/10.33919/esnbu.20.1.2