ESSE Book Award 2012

The book has been awarded an Honourable Mention at the ESSE Book Award 2012!

Naciscione, Anita. 2010. Stylistic Use of Phraseological Units in Discourse. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company: xiii, 292 pp. ISBN 978 90 272 1176 7 (HB); ISBN 978 90 272 8769 4 (EB).

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This interdisciplinary study presents the cutting-edge state of theoretical and applied research in the fascinating field of phraseology. The author elaborates key terminology and theoretical concepts of phraseology, while challenging some prevailing assumptions. Exploration of phraseological meaning across sentence boundaries is supported by ample textual illustrations of stylistic use ranging from Old English to Modern English. The book contains innovative research in the discourse-level features of phraseological units from a cognitive perspective, along with creative use of phraseological metaphor, metonymy and allusion, multimodal discourse included. The author argues for applied stylistics as a distinct area and the need to raise stylistic awareness among teachers and learners, translators, lexicographers and advertisers. The book offers an extensive glossary of key terms and a comprehensive bibliography. Stylistic Use of Phraseological Units in Discourse is a skillfully revised and extensively expanded new edition of the author's previously published ‘Phraseological Units in Discourse: Towards Applied Stylistics' (2001).

Hb 978 90 272 1176 7 EUR 95.00

Eb 978 90 272 8769 4 EUR 95.00

"With its clear and appealing style, the book can be recommended to students and scholars alike. [...] Anita Naciscione's book is written in a very concise and understandable manner suitable for both phraseologists and newcomers to the field, and it is sure to remain a major contribution to a better appreciation of phraseology in its unique position among, and its links to, other linguistic disciplines." Marianne Fischer, In Europhras 2011

"Anita Naciscione's new book is a marvellous scholarly achievement that makes a major contribution to our understanding of phraseological units in discourse. [...] I can think of no singlework that combines the study of cognition and stylistics in such an invigorating, beautiful manner." Raymond W. Gibbs, Jr., University of California , Santa Cruz , USA

"Phraseology is an uncomfortable overlapping zone for the "meta-linguistic establishment", whose guardians use to dodge the issue arguing its crossroads position between syntax, lexicon, or simply by pushing the whole field to the background of more or less exceptional phenomena." Antonio Pamies Bertr?n, European Society of Phraseology

"An excellent and unique book on the vast range and uses of phraseology. Its style is direct and to the point, making a complex subject easy to follow." Richard Trim, Université de Prouence , France

"This is a distinguished and inspiring approach to an area of linguistic and stylistic analysis where the crossover potential fordiscussion and pedagogy is considerable. An important contribution to the under-resourced area of phraseology." John McRae, University of Nottingham, United Kingdom

"The book is a clearly written account of the role that phraseological units play in generating stylistic effects in discourse. Naciscione draws on a range of disciplines - from discourse analysis to cognitive linguistics - to explain phraseological meaning, and, in an area notorious for its wealth of (often confusing) terminology, she does an excellent job of steering the reader through the mass of literature on the topic." Language & Literature 20(4), 2011

"This is an important book, one written on those peculiarly difficult, and particularly fruitful, borderlands of psychology, linguistics and literary studies. [...] Naciscione's book is at the forefront of research into phraseology, but its approach -cognitive, diachronic, applied, stylistic - makes it relevant and interesting in the field of literary studies, too. If we want to make the subject of English relevant and important again, then we need to adopt a similar approach to Naciscione's and to see literary texts as linguistic products of human minds. Naciscione's book is an invitation to begin that process of renewal of our subject." David West, University of Münster, in Changing English 19, 2012


Subject classification


  • Cognitive Stylistics
  • Phraseology
  • Discourse Studies
  • Applied Linguistics

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Table of contents:
List of abbreviations
Preface by Wolfgang Mieder
Part I. Phraseological units in discourse
1. Phraseology and cognitive stylistics
2. Identifcation of phraseological units in discourse
3. Key concepts of instantial stylistic use in discourse
4. The most common patterns of instantial stylistic use
5. Phraseological units in the web of discourse
6. Visual representation of phraseological image
Part II. Towards applied stylistics
7. Applied stylistics and instantial stylistic use
Index of phraseological units
Subject index
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