SEMIOTICS

LANGUAGE

Male Photographer

ADVERTISING

MA Programme – Semiotics, Language and Advertising

Compulsory and Elective Courses

 

COMPULSORY COURSES

Communication, Semiotic Systems and Pragmatics – winter semester, 4 credits.

Prof. Dr. Milena Popova, milena_rone@yahoo.com;

Preliminary Course Requirements: a good command of English, general knowledge in the fields of Linguistics and Semiotics.

Brief Course Outline: The goal of the course is to introduce students to some of the most significant and interesting semiotic theories related to anthropology, mythology and culture. Attention is focused on fairy tales, ancient and modern myths, literary works, social models. Thus the study of language is carried out in a broader semiotic framework. The course focuses upon the mechanisms for creating second-order sign systems and their interaction with language. Stress is laid upon similarities and differences between verbal and non-verbal codes and their possible combinations in the field of communication.

Language Manipulation and Lies, winter semester – 4 credits.

Prof. Dr. Habil. Stefana Dimitrova, stediru@abv.bg;

Preliminary Course Requirements: A good command of English, which will enable prospective candidates to read and analyse specialized literature.

Brief Course Outline: The course introduces students to contemporary theories of language as a form of behaviour. Attention is transferred from language system to people who use the language: the speakers with their subjective biotic characteristics. Such an approach raises issues of twofold character: linguistic and psychological. The richness and complexity of the communicative dimensions of language are demonstrated through the prism of communicative and pragmatic norms, which are an essential part of the social contract of every society.

Language and Emotion – summer semester, 2 credits.

Prof. Dr. Maksim Stamenov, maximstam@yahoo.com;

Preliminary Course Requirements: a good command of English; general knowledge in the field of Linguistics.

Brief Course Outline: The aim of the course is to offer general orientation in the subject area dealing with the interfaces of language and emotion. For a long time the subject did not steal the limelight of both linguists and psychologists of emotion, but during the last two decades it became an area of intensifying research efforts. During this period the focus of interest was mainly centred on the relationships between language and emotion via cognition and, correspondingly, the so called cognitive theories and models of emotional processes and representations. Here, instead, the subject will be represented in a wider context, i.e., providing students with knowledge and orientation not only about the relationships between cognition and emotion, but also about perception and emotion and action/behavior and emotion, as they become mediated and represented by the means of natural language.

During the course the students will work with a selection from the most representative literature on the subject currently available in English. Stress will be laid upon the development of a non-reductive taxonomy and phenomenology of the relationships between language and emotion from the viewpoints of psychology of emotions and linguistic semantics. The interface of language and emotion when taken into account and enacted optimally during interactions in society is supposed to develop and maintain the attitudes of sincerity and trust between the communicants. And the latter are the basis of persuasive expression in the media and arts.

Marketing Communication – summer semester, 3 credits.

Prof. Dr. Habil. Christo Kaftandjiev, christokaftandjiev@yahoo.com;

Preliminary Course Requirements: a good command of English; general knowledge in the fields of Linguistics, Theory of Literature and Theory of Communication.

Brief Course Outline: The goal of this course is to introduce students to the basic concepts of marketing communications, so that they could apply them in various types of communication.

Course Structure

Advertising. Definitions, classifications, basic concepts.

PR. Definitions, classifications, basic concepts.

Sales Promotions. Definitions, classifications, basic concepts.

Direct Marketing. Definitions, classifications, basic concepts.

Merchandising communication. Definitions, classifications, basic concepts.

Integration of marketing communication.

 

Semiotics of Communication – MA Programme, winter semester, 4 credits.

Prof. Dr. Habil. Christo Kaftandjiev, christokaftandjiev@yahoo.com;

Preliminary Course Requirements: a good command of English; general knowledge in the fields of Linguistics, Theory of Literature and Theory of Communication.

Brief Course Outline: The goal of this course is to introduce students to the basic concepts of semiotics and their use in different types of communication.

Course Structure

Alfabetics. Different sign systems and their alphabets.

Semantics. Semantic concepts. Stylistic figures.

Syntax. Different connections in sign systems. Text and context.

Pragmatics. Sign systems depending on different participants in the communication process. Codes and editing.

 

Film and TV Language – summer semester, 3 credits.

Prof. Dr. Lilia Raycheva, lraycheva@yahoo.com;

Preliminary Course Requirements: a good command of English; general knowledge in the field of semiotics of communication.

Brief Course Outline: The purpose of the course is to acquaint students with the specifics of the screen system of expression, taking into consideration the dynamics of this system in accordance with the technological characteristics of the media that use it. The course offers a  retrospective overview of the main theoretical concepts related to screen expression, as well as analysis of the prospects of its development. The evolution of visual and audio system is systematically studied. The types of editing are specifically emphasized. The goal is to prepare the students to think in audiovisual terms and to understand the semantics of screen language.

 

Communication and Audiovisual Services – summer semester, 3 credits.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Teodora Petrova,  teodora_p@yahoo.com;

Preliminary Course Requirements: a good command of English.

Brief Course Outline: The course is aimed at reviewing policies and theories in the field of communication and communication technologies. The course deals with such topics as audiovisual services, types of audiences and changes of patterns in use, misuse and publishing of information and media content through new information and communication technologies.

ELECTIVE COURSES

Language and Culture – winter semester, 2 credits.

Prof. Dr. Maxim Stamenov, maximstam@yahoo.com;

Preliminary Course Requirements: a good command of English; general knowledge in the field of Linguistics.

Brief Course Outline: The purpose of the course is to offer students an introduction to and overview of the problem area in question. If we assume that culture is “a historically transmitted pattern of meaning embodied in symbols, a system of inherited conceptions expressed in symbolic forms” (Geertz 1973, 89), the main means for both its maintenance and transmission becomes natural language. If this is the case language is the most faithful medium of representing the nature and phenomenology of culture both in its universal and culture-specific trends and patterns. And an orientation into the nature and the scope of mutual interpenetration of language and culture is of foundational significance for becoming successful performer in the arts, humanities and media in the age of globalization.

The basic orientation of the course is in terms of the academic disciplines of cultural anthropology and linguistic semantics. As a reference literature students are encouraged to consult and work with some of the newest and most popular textbooks dealing with the problems of culture and language currently available in English. The curriculum is, correspondingly, oriented to be compatible with the courses on the subject offered in the leading universities world-wide.

Language and Thought – winter semester, 2 credits.

Prof. Dr. Habil. Stefana Dimitrova, stediru@abv.bg;

Preliminary Course Requirements: A good command of English, which  will enable prospective to read and analyse specialized literature.

Brief Course Outline: The course introduces students to the interconnected fields of cognitive psychology, linguistic pragmatics and cognitive linguistics. Special emphasis is laid on the theory of language information processing in the human brain and on language as a container of structured, conceptualized and categorized knowledge of the world. The problem of the interdependence between quality knowledge and the processing of incoming information shaped by language is addressed in detail.

Grammar and Communication (Cross–Linguistic Parallels) – summer semester, 2 credits.

Prof. Dr. Yovka Tisheva, yovka.tisheva@gmail.com;

Preliminary Course Requirements: Basic knowledge of the grammar systems of source language and target language; practical skills in grammar analysis and translation.

Brief Course Outline: The goal of the course is to introduce students to the possibilities of modelling and presenting information from different perspectives and viewpoints by using the potential of grammar categories and grammar meanings specific to each language. The curriculum addresses problems related to the contemporary state of the Bulgarian and English (and of other languages, if necessary) grammar systems, and also to the way in which grammar meanings are expressed and translated in search of functional equivalence. During the seminars theoretical knowledge is practically applied in discussing specific examples of the translatability of grammar and pragmatic categories.

A Pragmatic Analysis of Jokes (in Spanish) – summer semester, 2 credits.

Prof. Dr. Milena Popova, milena_rone@yahoo.com;

Preliminary Course Requirements: a good command of Spanish and English.

Brief Course Outline: The goal of the course is to explain the strategies and effects in humorous discourse (mainly in jokes) in the light of modern pragmatic theories.  The analysis is carried out from a comparative perspective: revealing what is common and what is different between anecdotes in Spanish and English. The unconventional use of linguistic units is analysed in the framework of a broader semiotic model related to the evolution of the expressive potential of  language.

 

Communicative Aspects of Translation (in Spanish) – summer semester, 2 credits.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Ludmila Ilieva, ludmilailieva@yahoo.com;

Preliminary Course Requirements: a good command of Spanish, practical skills in translation.

Brief Course Outline: The goal of the course is to introduce students to the particularities of legal translation. Special attention is paid to the language-law relation, to the problems of legal linguistics and juridical translation, to the specificity of translation in the penal and administrative processes. The main focus is on the figure of the translator as an intermediary in unusual situations in which achieving the main goal of translation, i.e., successful communication, requires specific abilities and adequate strategies.

Archetypal Narratives – summer semester, 2 credits.

Prof. Dr. Habil. Christo Kaftandjiev, christokaftandjiev@yahoo.com;

Preliminary Course Requirements: a good command of English; basic knowledge in the fields of Linguistics, Theory of Literature, Communication Theory, Advertising and Marketing Communication.

Brief Course Outline: The goal of the course is to familiarize students with the basic concepts of narrative and archetype theory and their use in different types of communication – in journalism, art, cinema, literature, advertising, etc.

Course Structure

Basic archetype oppositions – light/dark; right/left; center/periphery; male/female; beautiful/ugly; we/others; etc.

Archetypes and drama. Dramatization of different communication models.

Archetypal narrative thinking and communicative scheme – the main characters in communication – heroes, villains, beauties and helpers.

Archetypal narrative thinking and communicative scheme – the main actions – deterioration/improvement, fighting, glorification.

Archetypal narrative thinking and communicative narrative scheme – magical gifts and heroic chronotope.

 

Spanish Humour (in Spanish) – summer semester, 2 credits.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Peter Mollov, pmollov@abv.bg;

Preliminary Course Requirements: a good command of Spanish.

Brief Course Outline: The purpose of the course is to introduce students to different forms of humour and to demonstrate the peculiarity of Spanish humour through the analysis of some emblematic texts (fictional and journalistic) from Middle Ages to our days: The Book of Good Love by Juan Ruiz, the most original work of Spanish medieval literature, the poetry and prose of the most prominent writer of the Spanish Baroque literary movement conceptismo Francisco de Quevedo, the satiric novel Fray Gerundio de Campazas by the neoclassical writer José Francisco de Isla, some of the best essays of the romantic writer Mariano José de Larra, the subtle irony of the novel Pepita Jiménez by Juan Valera, the surrealistic humour of Ramón Gómez de la Serna, some articles of the best Spanish humorous magazine of the XX century La Codorniz, parodic novels of Eduardo Mendoza, articles from contemporary press.

 

Building a Communication Campaign, - summer semester 2 credits

Kalina Pekova, PhD

The course aims to get the students acquainted with the ways a communication campaign is built, taking into consideration all modern instruments. All the communication tools and practices and the right integration of ATL and BTL activities with traditional and online approaches will be discussed through actual examples. Focus will be put on messaging as well as on campaign planning.

 

Language of media depiction

Kalina Petkova, PhD

The course aims to get the students acquainted with the visual expression of persistent cultural models, articulated and studied otherwise mainly through language. The discursive images of the world, embedded in a wide range of language and communication practices from everyday life, the media, and social networks, are also reflected in pictorial strategies. The easy and massive creation and distribution of images these days transforms the image into the dominant modus of expression in popular culture, publicity and cognitive habits of the new generations. That is why, the presentation and analysis of pictorial material will be part of each lecture. The characteristics of various pictorial practices are discussed and their potential to participate in the creation of integral morally and politically oriented representations is analyzed. Among the topics are: Signification and representation trends in advertising and media; Depiction strategies in public representation of women, minorities etc.; The body in media; Visual constructions of political power; Discursive links between representations of the world in science and art, art and advertising.

The Language of New Media

Julia Rone, PhD

The course “The Language of New Media” provides a comprehensive introduction to the latest research on the role of digital media in political communication, advertising and art. In the midst of popular discussions on “fake news”, political Tweets and memes, micro-targeted ads and data surveillance, the seminar aims to distill fact from myth and to engage students in a critical discussion on the ways digital media have transformed (or failed to transform) our world.

The seminar focuses on the tension between ideology and practice, the imagined and the real effects of digital media, and develops the ability of students to think critically about ongoing controversies. By engaging with texts by leading authors in communications studies, critical theory and aesthetics the students acquire not only conceptual clarity and a theoretical framework within which to analyze the impact of digital media, but also a broad empirical knowledge of a variety of cases from different national contexts.

Practical English (Intensive Course) – winter semester, 8 credits.

Nevena Alexieva, nevena47@yahoo.com; Prof. Dr. Milena Popova, milena_rone@yahoo.com;

Preliminary Course Requirements: B1 level of English (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages).

Brief Course Outline: The goal of this course is to provide students with broad knowledge and practice of the key elements of English grammar and vocabulary. It is also aimed at developing  effective communication skills. By completing the course, students will reach B2 level of English, which will enable them to analyse  and assess critically specialized literature.

Practical Spanish (Intensive Course) – winter semester, 8 credits.

Prof. Dr. Milena Popova, milena_rone@yahoo.com; Martina Ninova, avoninm@gmail.com;

Preliminary Course Requirements: basic knowledge of Spanish.

Brief Course Outline: The goal of this course is to provide students with basic knowledge and practice of the key elements of Spanish grammar and vocabulary. It is also aimed at developing  learners’ communication skills in order to improve their self-confidence and personal effectiveness. The learning process includes parallels and comparisons between English and Spanish grammar, so that students could use the positive transfer of knowledge from the first foreign language to the second foreign language.