The cognitive discursive aspect of realization of polyfunctional linguistic units in the mass media (on the material of the gerund)
The article deals with a cognitive-discursive research of gerund constructions in online editions of British newspapers and magazines such as The Guardian, The Times, and The Week. It studies the polyfunctional nature of the gerund and the way it is used in the mentioned editions to fulfil the main function of the mass media – to influence people’s minds and form their attitudes to reality. Texts of the online mass media obtain special features and refer to the media linguistics research field. Mass media has become not only the best way of entertaining, but the best instrument of manipulating. A gerund form as a dynamic linguistic unit combines substantive and verbal features expressed more or less within a certain context (semantic, syntactic and extralinguistic). The meaning of a gerund form can be defined in terms of pragmatic aspects of language. A recipient of a message interprets it according to the world view, background knowledge, age, culture, religion, social, and professional factors. From the point of view of the cognitive-discursive approach, polyfunctionality of the gerund allows it to fulfil complex functions of mass media discourse.