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postgraduate thesis: The semantic change of idioms from the Four Books = Si shu cheng yu yi bian yan jiu

TitleThe semantic change of idioms from the Four Books = Si shu cheng yu yi bian yan jiu
The semantic change of idioms from the Four Books = 四書成語義變研究
Authors
Issue Date2016
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
Citation
Chan, K. [陳潔儀]. (2016). The semantic change of idioms from the Four Books = Si shu cheng yu yi bian yan jiu. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR.
AbstractThis thesis studies the semantic change of idioms from the Four Books《四書》. The Four Books are a collection of writings from widely different times. They are the greatest Chinese Confucian Classics which have made an extraordinary impact on traditional Chinese culture. During the Song Dynasty, a Confucian scholar Zhu Xi 朱熹 compiled the Great Learning 《大學》, the Doctrine of the Mean 《中庸》, the Analects of Confucius 《論語》 and the Mencius 《孟子》together and it has served as the junzi’s 君子 standard of moral behavior. Since the Yuan Dynasty, the Four Books was selected as part of the Imperial Examination contents. Over the years, many scholars constructed in-depth studies on the Four Book’s weiyan dayi 微言大義. Numerous Chinese idioms were formed based on the text of the Four Books. Those idioms not merely illustrate the core value systems of Confucianism; they are also widely used in the Chinese society for both daily conversations and literary works. However, the meaning of those idioms have changed over time, some new meanings work well and exist together with the original one successfully. Consisting of five chapters, this thesis examines the semantic change of idioms from the Four Books. The first chapter is a general introduction which summarized the recent development and usage of the idioms from the Four Books. This chapter includes a literature reviews, evaluating the findings on Chinese idioms to construct a theoretical framework. Also, this chapter clarifies the research objectives, scopes and methodology. The second chapter illustrated the definition on the research area after reviewing different literature. It describes the definition and the formation of idioms, the characteristics of the idioms from the Four Books and the meaning of the formal and informal semantic change. The third chapter discusses some documentary evidence, including Chinese classic texts and scholar’s commentaries in order to understand the original meaning of the idioms. Afterwards, this chapter explores contemporary literatures so as to investigate the formal semantic development. The meaning of the idioms from the Four Books may be widened, narrowed, degraded, upgraded, transferred or distorted. The fourth chapter encloses examples from literature, newspaper and Internet resources to demonstrate the informal semantic change. Idioms could be flexible and malleable, which contains lexicological and rhetorical potential. The last chapter draws conclusions on the semantic change and the new interpretation of idioms. The idioms from the Four Books are deeply rooted in traditional culture. The semantic changes show the linkage between social development and new values of the Confucianism.
DegreeMaster of Philosophy
SubjectChinese language - Idioms
Dept/ProgramChinese
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/233930

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorChan, Kit-yee-
dc.contributor.author陳潔儀-
dc.date.accessioned2016-10-07T01:44:34Z-
dc.date.available2016-10-07T01:44:34Z-
dc.date.issued2016-
dc.identifier.citationChan, K. [陳潔儀]. (2016). The semantic change of idioms from the Four Books = Si shu cheng yu yi bian yan jiu. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR.-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/233930-
dc.description.abstractThis thesis studies the semantic change of idioms from the Four Books《四書》. The Four Books are a collection of writings from widely different times. They are the greatest Chinese Confucian Classics which have made an extraordinary impact on traditional Chinese culture. During the Song Dynasty, a Confucian scholar Zhu Xi 朱熹 compiled the Great Learning 《大學》, the Doctrine of the Mean 《中庸》, the Analects of Confucius 《論語》 and the Mencius 《孟子》together and it has served as the junzi’s 君子 standard of moral behavior. Since the Yuan Dynasty, the Four Books was selected as part of the Imperial Examination contents. Over the years, many scholars constructed in-depth studies on the Four Book’s weiyan dayi 微言大義. Numerous Chinese idioms were formed based on the text of the Four Books. Those idioms not merely illustrate the core value systems of Confucianism; they are also widely used in the Chinese society for both daily conversations and literary works. However, the meaning of those idioms have changed over time, some new meanings work well and exist together with the original one successfully. Consisting of five chapters, this thesis examines the semantic change of idioms from the Four Books. The first chapter is a general introduction which summarized the recent development and usage of the idioms from the Four Books. This chapter includes a literature reviews, evaluating the findings on Chinese idioms to construct a theoretical framework. Also, this chapter clarifies the research objectives, scopes and methodology. The second chapter illustrated the definition on the research area after reviewing different literature. It describes the definition and the formation of idioms, the characteristics of the idioms from the Four Books and the meaning of the formal and informal semantic change. The third chapter discusses some documentary evidence, including Chinese classic texts and scholar’s commentaries in order to understand the original meaning of the idioms. Afterwards, this chapter explores contemporary literatures so as to investigate the formal semantic development. The meaning of the idioms from the Four Books may be widened, narrowed, degraded, upgraded, transferred or distorted. The fourth chapter encloses examples from literature, newspaper and Internet resources to demonstrate the informal semantic change. Idioms could be flexible and malleable, which contains lexicological and rhetorical potential. The last chapter draws conclusions on the semantic change and the new interpretation of idioms. The idioms from the Four Books are deeply rooted in traditional culture. The semantic changes show the linkage between social development and new values of the Confucianism.-
dc.languagechi-
dc.publisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)-
dc.relation.ispartofHKU Theses Online (HKUTO)-
dc.rightsThe author retains all proprietary rights, (such as patent rights) and the right to use in future works.-
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License-
dc.subject.lcshChinese language - Idioms-
dc.titleThe semantic change of idioms from the Four Books = Si shu cheng yu yi bian yan jiu-
dc.titleThe semantic change of idioms from the Four Books = 四書成語義變研究-
dc.typePG_Thesis-
dc.identifier.hkulb5793643-
dc.description.thesisnameMaster of Philosophy-
dc.description.thesislevelMaster-
dc.description.thesisdisciplineChinese-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-

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