SPECIAL ISSUE OF TERMINOLOGY ON Lexical-semantic Approaches to Terminology

SPECIAL ISSUE OF TERMINOLOGY ON Lexical-semantic Approaches to Terminology

Guest editors: Pamela Faber (University of Granada)


Marie-Claude L’Homme (University of Montreal)


The importance of lexical semantics is increasing in terminology work. This is in consonance with the fact that word and term meaning is now in the spotlight, thanks to dictionary compilation, ontology modeling, document indexing, and information retrieval. As such, lexical semantics has become a convergence point for disciplines such as lexicography, phraseology, corpus linguistics, pragmatics, and knowledge representation, all of which are crucial to Terminology.

In the initial years of Terminology, meaning, viewed as an inherent property of specialized knowledge units, was not given its due importance. In fact, terms were not even regarded as true language units but rather as mere labels for concepts. Definitions in term entries were a data field that was often filled by automatically including definitions found in other resources.

However, the advent of corpus linguistics and corpus pattern analysis has brought many questions to the forefront in Terminology, such as term variation and polysemy, which were previously not envisaged in specialized language. Other issues include the identification of specialized meaning in running text, as well as the relations between terms and other lexical units. As a result, terminologists now have to deal with term meaning and how it is represented in texts.

In addition, new methods for compiling specialized dictionaries and for representing knowledge require sophisticated models to account for fine-grained semantic distinctions and rich sets of paradigmatic and syntagmatic relations. Such methods should be based on a coherent set of theoretical premises. In this sense, a number of meaning-based linguistic frameworks can be or have been usefully applied or adapted to Terminology. These include the following:

  • Cognitive Semantics (e.g. Talmy 2000)
  • Explanatory Combinatorial Lexicology, ECL (Mel’čuk et al. 1984-1999; 1995)
  • Frame Semantics (Fillmore 1982, 1985)
  • The Generative Lexicon (Pustejovsky 1995)
  • Lexical Grammar Model (Martín Mingorance 1998, Faber and Mairal 1999)

The editors invite submissions that present innovative research work or articles addressing a central conceptual, theoretical, and/or empirical investigation on lexical semantic approaches to Terminology and Specialized Languages. Possible topics include but are not limited to the following:

1.            Conceptual modeling and knowledge representation as reflected in lexical structure

2.            Representation of specialized meaning (e.g. definitions, argument structure, knowledge patterns)

3.            Paradigmatic and/or syntagmatic relations

4.            Applications of lexical-semantic frameworks to the analysis and management of terminological data

5.            Extraction of semantic data from specialized corpora

6.            Terminology knowledge bases that include or are based on lexical semantic frameworks

7.            Lexical modeling for ontologies

8.            Terminological metaphor


Papers should be written with Word and comprise between 20-30 pages (max. 9,000 words). More information on formatting requirements can be found on the John Benjamins website (http://benjamins.com/#catalog/journals/term). English is preferred (80% of the contents), but submissions in French, Spanish or German will be considered. Each issue of Terminology contains up to six or seven articles.

Please send submissions to Pamela Faber (pfaber@ugr.es).

Scientific Committee

Guadalupe Aguado (Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Spain)

Pierrette Bouillon (École de traduction et d’interprétation, Université de Genève, Switzerland)

Beatrice Daille (Université de Nantes, France)

Kyoko Kanzaki (Toyohashi University of Technology, Japan)

Pilar León-Arauz (Universidad de Granada, Spain)

Patrick Leroyer (Aarhus University, Denmark)

Ricardo Mairal (UNED, Madrid)

François Maniez (Université de Lyon, France)

Elizabeth Marshman (University of Ottawa, Canada)

Alain Polguère (Université de Lorraine & RELIEF ATILF CRNS, France)

Margaret Rogers (University of Surrey, UK)

Zuoyan Song (Beijing Normal University, China)

Carlos Subirats (Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona, Spain)

Rita Temmerman (Erasmushogeschool, Belgium)

Gerd Wotjak (University of Leipzig, Germany)

Important dates

Submission date for full paper: January 31, 2014

Acceptance/Rejection notice: March 31, 2014

Final papers due: April 30, 2014

The special issue is scheduled to appear at the end of 2014.


Faber, P. and Mairal R. (1999). Constructing a Lexicon of English Verbs. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter

Fillmore, C. J. (1982) Frame Semantics. In The Linguistic Society of Korea (ed.), Linguistics in the Morning Calm, 111-137. Seoul: Hanshin.

Fillmore C. J. (1985). Frames and the Semantics of Understanding. Quadernidi Semantica 6: 222–253.

Martín Mingorance, L.(1998) El modelo lexemático funcional. Amalia Marín Rubiales (ed.). Granada : Universidad de Granada

Mel’čuk et al., I. (1984-1999). Dictionnaire explicatif et combinatoire du français contemporain. Montréal: Presses de l’Université de Montréal.

Mel’čuk, I., A. Clas and A. Polguère (1995) Introduction à la lexicologie explicative et combinatoire. Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgique): Duculot / Aupelf – UREF.

Pustejovsky, J. (1995). The Generative Lexicon. Cambridge, MA : MIT Press.

Talmy, L  (2000). Towards a Cognitive Semantics, Vols. 1 and 2. Cambridge, MA : MIT Press,

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