Key ideas, theories and concepts of Change

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  • Combination of two words to make a new one. Usually using only parts of the two words.


Lunch and Breakfast


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Two words combined to make a new one. In this case all of the word is used


Ice and Cream.

Ice Cream

Usually the two words start as separate words "Ice Cream", then they become hyphenated "ice-cream" until eventually they become a single word "icecream".

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Reducing a word by removing a part of it. 

For example:

Telephone becomes


Parambulator becomes


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Initialism / Acronymy


Can be seen as an extreme form of clipping. Each letter of the Initialism is pronounced as its own word.



The same as Initialism, but all the letters are pronounced as a single word


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Affixation involves adding prefixes and suffixes (or both) to already existing words. 

Adding a prefix often REVERSES the meaning such as:

the meaning of "cool" is reversed to "uncool"

Adding a suffix more often that not changes the WORD CLASS of the word, such as:

turning the NOUN: "mess" into the ADJECTIVE: "messy"

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Words of this class arise from a misunderstanding. They are nouns that are assumes to have been Affixated, so the prefix or suffix was removed which forms a new word. 

For example:

The infinitive "to process" is derived from the word "process"

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Occurs when a word is used in a different class than it originally derives from. This is not affixation.

For example:

"to text" became a verb from the noun "a text"

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These are proper nouns that became something else, usually a noun used to name something invented by the person that invented it, or generic items known by a brand name.

For example:

Hoover is now used normally for vacuum cleaners, even for other makes

Jeans are used for any kind of trousters made of the same material

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Specialisation (Narrowing)

The word begines refering to something really broadm such as the word gay meaning carefree, light and happy, but has narrowed to mean a homosexual man.

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Generalisation (Broadening)

The opposite of Specialisation. The word starts off very specific, then the meaning broadens to mean other things as well.

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Amelioration / Pejoration

Amelioration (Semantic Degradation):

This occurs when a word's meaning and asosciations become more positive.

Pejoration (Semantic Strengthening):

Opposite of Ameliorationg where the word's meanings and asosciations become more negative.

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