Conceptual Maps of European Values

Piotr Nagórka, Poland, ID LLCE2016-350;         Systems of human values reflected in European languages have not yet been diagnosed in linguistics, as no accurate diagnostic measures have been proposed. Research has been conducted into methods of modelling conceptual systems of moral values. Since ethics, unlike subjects related to natural sciences, resists lexicographic approach reliant on topicality, a new method has been devised. Specialised lexicography tools can be optimized to deal with the subject of ethics. The new method takes into account differences between subject areas regarding their associations with a type of science. Systems of human values can be measured based on prioritizing documents created in European languages according to the degree to which concepts referred to in these documents are fixed. The findings give rise to a cross-historical and cross-cultural linguistic enterprise. Its aim is to identify moral concepts and to connect them into semantic maps. The maps, one per language, are contrasted to find out which moral concepts are ‘shared’ across languages, and which of them are language specific. The model of ‘common’ values can be seen as an instrument to preserve and promote European moral heritage.

Key words: concepts of human values, conceptual maps, European languages, language modelling methods, specialised lexicography

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