Russian Language Journal


cognitive grammar, language, morphology


This study examines modern Russian cases within a Cognitive Grammar framework. Grammatical case, as one of the fundamental language categories, has always interested linguistic researchers. In languages that possess case systems, virtually no utterance is possible without taking into account grammatical case. This grammatical category is very complex and its acquisition is an enormously arduous task for learners whose native language does not possess a case system or a case system that is not as pronounced as it is in the target language. According to Janda (2002), “the meanings of grammatical cases are probably the biggest obstacle faced by students trying to learn Russian.” Cognitive Grammar (CG) (Langacker 1987, 1991; Lakoff 1990) offers a particularly effective and practical approach to language that relates grammar to mental processes and structures in human cognition. It claims that lexicon, morphology, and syntax form a gradation that is fully explainable by means of symbolic units, and that language grammar preexists in human’s conceptual apparatus in form of these units.