The article is devoted to the dynamics of semantic changes that the term “nostalgia” has undergone over time. Due to globalization and informatization the phenomenon of retro is gaining popularity, its aim being to evoke nostalgia. There has still been no linguistic justification of the definition of nostalgia when studying retro in humanitarian sciences. The aim of the present paper is to describe changes introduced to the semantics of the term “nostalgia” since its appearance in the XVII c. till nowadays, including its denotative and connotative meanings. The material of the research is texts from the British, American and Russian national corpora published from 1800 to 2020. The analysis yielded a significant shift in the meaning of the term “nostalgia”. First, the term lost its original meaning of “disease” and came to denote a yearning not only for a place, but also time. Second, in the 1980s the term “nostalgia” lost its negative connotation and acquired a positive one. Third, in the XXI c. owing to the postmodern tendency towards nomadism the meaning of “nostalgia” was blurred and partially desemanticized. In the article a definition of “nostalgia” is suggested that can be used when studying retro in the humanities.
Murashova, E.P. (2021). The dynamics of the semantic changes of the term “nostalgia” as a key component of retro. Issues of Applied Linguistics, 41, 103-122.