Micro-discourses and context-enrichment: Interjections, vocatives and adversative particles
Alessandra Giorgi
September 2023

In this work I discuss evidence in favor of two theoretical notions: micro-discourses and context enrichment. I will do so by considering structures including interjections, vocatives and adversative particles such as ma (but). I also briefly discuss the distribution of secondary interjections in connection with the relevant phenomena investigated here. I compare standard Italian with (standard) American English and some Italian dialects: Roman and Neapolitan. I show that the items in question appear on the left of the portion of the sentence which is currently called left periphery and are organized in a predictable order. I argue that they must be taken to be external to the sentence itself in that they constitute separate speech acts, exhibiting their characteristic prosodic contours and gestural patterns. Interestingly, there are no main differences across the languages considered here. The general theoretical issue of this work is therefore the relationship between the linguistic notion of discourse and the pragmatic notion of speech act. In other words, my aim is to describe on principled grounds how pragmatics is mapped into syntax. The hypothesis I will argue for in what follows is that discourse heads provide the syntactic device to connect separate speech acts in a uniform syntactic structure
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/007591
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: Quaderni ASIT, Padua
keywords: pragmatics, syntax, vocative, interjection, adversative, discourse, context
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