Le genre des noms inanimés utilisés comme noms communs de personnes


  • Daniel Elmiger Département de langue et littérature allemandes, Université de Genève




This article deals with denominations used to refer to human persons (personal nouns). In addition to the designations traditionally used for humans, a number of other nouns (also referring to inanimate referents) can, contextually or usually, be used as personal nouns. These items (such as 'tête', "head") generally have a grammatical gender that is maintained in the metonymic use, whether the word refers to a man or a woman. However, this gender is not always stable: In the past, a number of nouns designating a human by metonymy have become full personal nouns that can be used with both genders, like the majority of personal nouns. A similar evolution can be assumed for a number of other types of figurative use, for which attestations and a theoretical framework are provided to explain this movement.




Comment citer

Elmiger, D. (2019). Le genre des noms inanimés utilisés comme noms communs de personnes. Travaux neuchâtelois De Linguistique, (71), 1–17. https://doi.org/10.26034/tranel.2019.2989