Source, Function of Proverbs in Discourse

Elias Dominguez Barajas

Function of Proverbs in Discoure: The Case of a Mexican Transnational Social Network


Quoting Norman Podhoretz’s autobiography and his term “the brutal bargain”: “upward social mobility on the condition that ethnic and working-class markers—and perhaps even social ties—are forsaken” (5). SURVIVOR GUILT


Pg. 12: “social change and determination of meaning are rooted in the acts of discourse more so than in the reiteration of a learned corpus of values.


Building on the significance of webs for theoretical constructions of cultural and discourse analysis. The semiotic web of culture from Geertz’s interpretive anthropology probes the symbolic dimensions of meaning making as activity, building on Weber’s “webs of significance.”  Connect to network-actor theory.


12: Engagement in argument [. . .] drives perception more so than preexisting values”


19: “qualitative studies reveal the multiple-dimensions of social interaction, self-perception and motivation, and the complex dynamics of language, culture and thought in the interpretation of situations and events”



[. . .] even the most common linguistic exchanges require our use of complex mental resources and socio-cultural competence. That is, if we add to those linguistic subtleties of intention (what a speaker meant to do by uttering something), allusion (implicit topical references), and convention (socially sanctioned patterns of expression), the equally subtle distinctions of cultural practices and culture-specific referents, the ability to understand messages fraught with these latter elements seems even more for the uninitiated—or the outsider





The rhetorical intention is culturally situated in so far as each discursive community has its own communicative conventions (preferred ways of speaking), ideological foundations (values informing behavior and attitude), and a collective conceptual database (discrete, generally shared knowledge). The discernment of rhetorical intention is premised on recognizing how these various components inter-relate in a given situation.

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