Contrastive lexical semantics was the main topic of an International Workshop at the University of Munster in May, 1997. It was addressed from different perspectives, from the pragmatic perspective of a corpus-oriented approach as well as from the model-oriented perspective of sign theoretic linguistics. Whereas the rule-governed model-oriented approach is necessarily restricted to subsets of vocabulary, the pragmatic approach aims to analyse and describe the whole vocabulary-in-use. After the pragmatic turn, lexical semantics can no longer be seen as a discipline on its own but has to be developed as an integral part of a theory of language use. Essential features of individual languages can be discovered only by looking beyond the limits of our mother languages and including a contrastive perspective. Within a pragmatic, corpus-oriented approach essential new ideas are discussed, mainly the insight that single words can no longer be considered to be the lexical unit. It is the complex multi-word lexical unit a pragmatic approach has to deal with.
1. Foreword; 2. The Lexical Item (by Sinclair, John McH.); 3. Contrastive Lexical Semantics (by Weigand, Edda); 4. The Vocabulary of Emotion: A contrastive analysis of anger in German, English, and Italian (by Weigand, Edda); 5. Sprachvergleich als Textvergleich (by Schmitt, Christian); 6. Zur kontrastiv-semantischen Analyse von Emotionen: Semantische 'Argerdorfer' im Russischen und im Deutschen (by Dem'jankov, Valerij); 7. Equivalence in Contrastive Semantics: The effect of cultural differences (by Westheide, Henning); 8. Sprachsystem und Sprachgebrauch in der kontrastiven lexikalischen Semantik (by Hauenherm, Eckhard); 9. Composition Principles within the Word and within Ways of Use of Words (by Gruaz, Claude); 10. Lexical Items and Medium-Transferibility in English and German (by Esser, Jurgen); 11. Types of Lexical Variation (by Schwarze, Christoph); 12. Non-overt Categories in Russian Partitive and Pseudo-partitive Constructions (by Steube, Anita); 13. Russian and German Idioms from a Contrastive Perspective (by Dobrovol'skij, Dmitrij); 14. Word Sense Disambiguation: An experimental study for German (by Paprotte, Wolf); 15. General Index; 16. List of Contributors