LOOKING AT THE CHINESE NUMERAL THROUGH THE LENSE OF MATHEMATICAL AND LANGUAGE SIGNS EQUIVALENCE
FUNCTIONAL ASPECTS OF INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION. TRANSLATION AND INTERPRETING ISSUES
The polystructural nature of the Chinese semiotic system manifests itself in the fact that there are several sets of numbers in China: rod numerals, banker's numerals, Arabic numerals, Roman numerals, the traditional Suzhou numerals, the Heavenly Stems and the Earthly Branches. This study has been executed in the framework of the semiotic approach and its aim is to determine which of the above sets may perform language functions, i.e. act as numerals, and to establish the bases therefor. A.F.
... es therefor. A.F. Losev's sign theory serves as the methodological framework. The theory states that a language has a two-plane nature. In this context the relationship between the expression and the content planes are the correlation between the digit and the number. The application of the theory allows one to reveal the specificity of the language sign as opposed to the specificity of the mathematical sign. The Frege triangle depicting the structure of the sign is used to describe such phenomena as the digit, the number, and the numeral. The left apex of the triangle represents the number (the denotatum) -id est an image in human consciousness. The upper apex of the triangle represents the sign (the character in the Chinese language). The right apex of the triangle represents the notion about the denotatum. Since the Frege triangle has only three apexes Functional aspects of intercultural communication. Translation and interpreting issues. Proceedings. 2019. Volume 6 484 it may not be applied to all the numeric signs -just the ones that are numerals in which case the left apex representing the denotatum remains constant and the upper and the right ones are variable. The language sign itself is a part of the semiosis process in which the interpreter of the process is extremely important. Cultural peculiarities of the nation are encoded in the numerals -they may be understood by an interpreter who is either the native speaker or a foreigner with the appropriate cultural background. The analysis of the nature of the Chinese numeric signs and their functions makes it possible to qualify the signs belonging to rod numerals, the Heavenly Stems and the Earthly Branches, the Suzhou numbers as numerals with the sign structure following the Frege triangle pattern.