Olena Kuts
John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin
Oleg Gorbaniuk
University of Zielona Góra
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psycholexical taxonomy
individual differences

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The article purpose is to analyze the historical basis of the psycholexical taxonomy of natural languages, to consider the results of the conducted psycholexical studies, as well as to reveal the prospects of studies of individual differences in Ukrainian lexicon and their importance. The assumption that personal psychological differences are encoded in language goes back to the days of Galton, and the ideas formulated by Goldberg became the basis of psycholexic research. By conducting psycholexical studies of a particular natural language, it is possible to identify the structure of the lexicon used to describe an individual, identify the specific features of a particular language, and the similarity of a structure obtained with the components of psycholexical structures of other languages ​​in order to determine the level of their universality.

The first psycholexical studies of the Ukrainian lexicon, according to the principles of typical psychological research, performed classification of the terms describing people’s individual differences. As a result of the performed analysis of the universal Ukrainian dictionary, 20 024 such descriptors were identified. Through semantic analysis, 1 634 distinct morphemes were identified among them, describing differences between people in the sphere of personality. This opens up the prospect for quantitative psycholexical studies in different parts of the language containing personality descriptors. The richest part of the language for such terms in many languages ​​is the group of adjectives that have identified the Big Factors (e.g., the Big Five).

Other parts of the language, such as attributive and typological nouns, adjectives, and verbs, are also of great value for lexical studies because they complement the adjective structure due to the specific terms contained exclusively in those parts of the language. Typological nouns constitute a special group, since among the identified unique morphemes, 22,0% of the morphemes are from typological nouns that describe individual differences, accounting for 13,0% of the total unique morphemes of personality, and also have several advantages in interpersonal relationships. The least studied group is the personality-descriptive verbs. They are also important for lexical research because they describe a temporary action that characterizes an individual, whereby, naming specific behaviours, they do not contain estimates. The use of a more widespread restrictive approach in lexical studies makes it possible to compare the results of lexical research in many other languages.

For a deeper study of the Ukrainian vocabulary structure in the future, it is necessary to pay attention not only to personality descriptors, but also to individual differences in worldview, cognitive, emotional and motivational reactions to other people, social evaluations and emotional states. The results of the quantitative psycholexical research will promote discussion about the universality of personality measurements, as well as reveal specific personal traits of Ukrainian speakers and create a basis for elaboration of cultural-specific models and research tools.


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