Shoes can be meaningful, sure. The word “shoes” is full of meaning, as are words for particular varieties of shoe. This study tries to make that clear:
“A Look at the World Through a Word ‘Shoes’: A Componential Analysis of Meaning,” Miftahush Shalihah, Journal of Language and Literature, vol. 15, no. 1, 2015, pp. 81-90. The author, at Sanata Dharma University, Indonesia, explains:
“Shoes” is a word which has many synonyms as this kind of outfit has developed in terms of its shape, which is obviously seen. From the observation done in this research, there are 26 kinds of shoes with 36 distinctive features. The types of shoes found are boots, brogues, cleats, clogs, espadrilles, flip-flops, galoshes, heels, kamiks, loafers, Mary Janes, moccasins, mules, oxfords, pumps, rollerblades, sandals, skates, slides, sling-backs, slippers, sneakers, swim fins, valenki, waders and wedge. The distinctive features of the word “shoes” are based on the heels, heels shape, gender, the types of the toes, the occasions to wear the footwear, the place to wear the footwear, the material, the accessories of the footwear, the model of the back of the shoes and the cut of the shoes.
The study includes a detailed chart of shoe characteristics. Here is the top part of that chart:
The study concludes with a flourish:
CONCLUSION—The theory that is served in the discussion is used to analyze the distinctive features of the word shoes. By having this analysis, the writer hopes that the reader can have a better understanding on the differences of each type of the shoes. The writer also provides a table so that the reader can see the differences more clearly.
BONUS: The author’s master’s thesis looked for meaning elsewhere, as is clear from the document’s title: “A Pragmatic Study of Humor in Asterix at the Olympic Games Comic.”