SEMANTIC ANALYZABILITY AND IDIOM COMPREHENSION: A CASE STUDY OF ARAB LEARNERS
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One of the reasons for the relevance of idiom studies is the pervasiveness of figurative language in everyday discourse (Cieślicka: 2005). However, despite the frequency of idioms, they remain an obstruction to a lot of foreign language learners. The comprehension and interpretation of idiomatic expressions has been the focus of much debate in recent literature. Yet, despite the fact that there exists extensive research on processing idiomatic expressions in the monolingual mode, much less has been written about the way in which bilingual language users comprehend and interpret idiomatic language. The present study aims to fill in the gap by highlighting the issue of bilingual figurative competence. It starts with a brief overview of idiom comprehension models. Then, it presents and analyses a study conducted on the strategies Arab learners use to decode idioms. The results of the field research are analyzed, discussed and conclusions are drawn, in a last instance.
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