CICERO’S EDUCATIONAL SPACE FROM INTERCULTURAL PERSPECTIVE: SEMANTICS AND SEMIOTICS

Abstract. The concept of learning space has been under close
study in the past decades. While generally referring to a place
where teaching and learning practices occur, it demonstrates different approaches to its understanding and interpretation. Modern
education is a product of a millennial cultural tradition, changing
ideas and ideals, values and waysto achieve them. Education isa
part of a societal culture; it is the greatest value, a mirror and an
extremely effective channel for translating societal and cultural
values. This essay is aimed at revealing physical and value aspects of an educational space created and promoted by Marcus
Tullius Cicero whose major goal was to raise educated, qualified
and wise citizens of Rome. To achieve this, text and translation
analyses of Cicero’s treatises “Divination”, “On Duties” and his
selected letters to Atticus were conducted. The conception of the
educational space as a physical and spiritual object provides an
opportunity to look at Cicero’s heritage from cultural and pedagogical perspective. In organizing places for “scholarly leisure”,
Cicero affirmed the necessity to organize a comfortable educational space in which there would be room for reasoning, discussion, doubt, a joint search for truth. The semiotics of such space
reflects Cicero’s Hellenophillic views. And it is this semiotics
that is reflected in the “European” perception of the ideal educational space. An analysis of the semantics of the key words used
in Cicero’s treatise “On Duties” in the Latin, Russian and English translations of the treatise was conducted. The translations of
the two key lexemes, “officium” and “honestum”, were analysed
in terms of cultural connotations and translation accuracy. It was
revealed that both English and Russian translations of these
words tend to obscure their original semantics linked to the specifics of ancient Roman reality. The loss in meanings characteristic of translated texts was revealed. Thus, it is advisable to bear
in mind the original cultural connotations of the key concepts in
order to give an adequate evaluation of Cicero’s educational ideas.
Keywords:Cicero, educational space, cultural specifics, translation

Yana A. Volkova
Institute of Foreign Languages
Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia
Moscow, Russia
e-mail: y.a.v@list.ru
ORCID ID: 0000-0003-1456-5881

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