The Pragmatics of Destiny in Russian and English (towards a description of fundamental cultural concepts)
This paper deals with the Semantics/Pragmatics distinction in a contrastive ethnolinguistic aspect. I argue for the validity of this distinction based on cross-linguistic data. My claim is that the specificity of the so-called language key words [Wierzbicka 1990:15-17] - linguospecific items particularly representative of a given language speakersђ mentality - is due to pragmatic rather than semantic peculiarities. These pragmatic peculiarities distinguish the key words both from their synonyms within the same language and their counterparts in other languages. The languages under discussion are Russian and English, analyzed within a combined frame of Integral Language Description model [Apresjan 1995:8-238] and Wierzbickaђs ethnolinguistic approach.