Vladan Pavlović

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The paper presents a set of anti-proverbs – innovative and typically satirical, ironic, or humorous alterations of traditional proverbs, from English and Serbian (e. g. Taste makes waist < Haste makes waste; Dobro se dobro zaboravlja < Dobro se dobrim vraća), and examines the strategies employed in the two languages in the process of their creation. The paper concludes that the process of creation of anti-proverbs from proverbs involves a number of strategies, all of them typically leading to the emergence of a new expression with a clear communicative message. Those strategies generally involve lexical substitution or lexical addition, whereby the overall syntactic pattern can be either preserved or changed. It also concludes that the strategies used in the creation of anti-proverbs, as well as their topics, are quite comparable both in English and in Serbian. The paper also presents a number of theoretical and methodological implications for further research.


anti-proverbs, proverbs, paremiology, proverb alteration mechanisms

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