A interjection is generally a invariable category of Mot , allowing the speaking subject, the enonciator, to express a spontaneous emotion (joy, anger, surprise, sadness, admiration, pain, etc), to address a short message to the recipient (consent, denial, greeting, order, etc), or to carry out - roughly - a sound image of an event (cry of animal, explosion, unspecified noise, etc) The interjection can also consist of a Syntagme or a Phrase. Sometimes some grammairiens define it as a sentence word , since to it only, it is equivalent to a whole sentence, of standard exclamative.

Various types of interjections

An interjection can take the form of a onomatopoeia ; it can be also a word borrowed , either with the French or with the others Langue S.

  • the onomatopoeias, which, for certain theorists, constitute in fact the only true interjections , consist of imitations of noises, sounds, cries of animals, but also, human expressions, more or less spontaneous (song, laughter, cough…) :

Ah ! IEA! Bang! Chut! Cock-a-doodle-doo! Miaou! Patatras! Nananère! Zou! Schbloing…

  • Another category of interjections is consisted a certain number of loans . They are sometimes called false interjections . When the loan is carried out starting from French, one deals with change of category and one speaks about unsuitable Dérivation. On the contrary, when the loan is carried out starting from a foreign language, one speaks about lexical Emprunt:

Good! Hello! Cheer! That, then! Ciao! Courage! Ahead! Go! Hourrah! Misfortune! Thank you! Shit! My God! Not! Olé! Yes! Saperlipopette! If! Zut! Stop! @+

Interjection and syntax

The interjection is most antiquated of the categories of words. It is independent of the words which precede or which follow: being never attached, neither directly nor indirectly, with the couple consisted the Verb and the subject, it must be regarded as being except Syntaxe. Indeed, sufficient with it only, it does not supplement anything (étymologiquement, interjection means thrown in the medium).

  • On the other hand, when it consists of a unsuitable Dérivation (a loan with the other species: Name, Pronoun, Verb, Adjectival or Adverb), an interjection can then have satellite ( complements , expansions …) :

Time of cochon!

the common Nom “ pig ” is complement of the name “ time ”, employed like an interjection.

Purée of us others!

the nominal group “ of us others ” (compound of a Preposition, a personal Pronoun and an Indefinite adjective ) has as a function: complement of the interjection (i.e., complement of the name) “ mashed potatoes ”.
  • One will notice in addition, that the apostrophizes (the fact of naming the person to which addresses the speech) and the nominal sentence (or sentence averbale , private sentence of verb) is connected with the interjections:

Jean, we have a problem! Pas of panique!

the proper name “ Jean ” is an apostrophe. The sentence “ No panic! ” is a nominal sentence, which can also be analyzed like an interjection.

Interjections, an embryonic language?

At the Australopithecus, there probably did not exist yet of truth Langage, all was cry, a biological cry always associated with an emotion, ready to transmit a message of alarm or pleasure. The neuronal Liaison of this primitive cry (emission and perception) was however already established with the limbic Système, the brain of the emotions and affectivity. During million years were forged conditionings between cries, emotions, reactions vegetative (autonomous nervous system) and reactions neuroendocriniennes of the Stress. At some of our cousins simiesques, there exists a communication by cries differentiated to inform type of danger as in the monkeys vervets.

If it persists in our current language some rough vestige of these primitive cries, it should be sought in the interjection , related to the spontaneous expression. One can regret the indigence of the dictionaries on these invariable short notes, employed to translate an emotional attitude of the speaking subject. These interjections have several directions in general, but it is not a question of real a Polysémie, because for each direction the emotive tonality is very different.

" Ah! " is an expressive interjection marking a sharp feeling (pleasure, pain, admiration, impatience…), sometimes an interjection of insistence and reinforcement (ah! that I suffer…). It is obvious that a ah of pleasure does not have the same tonality as a ah of pain or impatience. The Eastern languages exploit much this variation height of sound to differentiate their words. Doubled, the interjection ah mark the surprise or perplexity: Ah! Ah! and redoubled " Ah! Ah! Ah! " , it is used to transcribe the laughter. Mimicry of accompaniment makes it possible to recognize the right direction. " Ha! " is used to give more force to the expression or expresses the pain, the surprise. " He! " or " eh! " is an interjection which is used to call or to challenge. The double " He! " according to the tone expresses approval, the appreciation, the irony or the mockery. " Oh! " is an interjection of surprised or admiration, which is also used to reinforce the expression of an unspecified feeling. " Ohé! " is a cry of call; " holà! " moderate, stops, like a vocal brake; " hoot! " is used to advance or accelerate the horse. " Hi! hi! " mark the laughter (under cape).

These interjections have alternatives and uses different according to the areas from France. In the same way, from one language to another, the transcription of the noises and cries vary. Their expression accompanied by adapted mimicry allows mimer the whole of the human emotions, whereas their nonemotive semantic contents are poor. The writers make a literary use of the onomatopoeias and interjections These short notes belong to the oral speech and bring their emotional spontaneous coloring to the artificially arranged texts, conferring the appearance of the spoken language to them.

In its Essai on the origin of human knowledge (1746) Condillac considers that the primitive language is made emotional interjections expressing by the sound a mood or a feeling: this type of theory is described as theory ``peuh-peuh''. These emotional interjections, precursory of the émotèmes (couple of letters associated with an emotion such tr with the fear, rear with the threat, have with the painful risk, etc), constitute a first test of connection sound-emotion, short sounds which acquire significance only according to the height of the sound and the mimicry of accompaniment (grimace of pain, smile of pleasure). The Tonal languages , like the Chinese, systematically use the polysemous possibilities of the tonality of the sounds thus allowing the extension of the lexicon of this language.

(extracted To hear the words which say the evils , Dr. Christian Dufour. ED of the Dolphin June 06)

Related subjects

Simple: Interjection

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