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Die Modalpartikeln ja, doch und schon : Zu ihrer Syntax, Semantik und Pragmatik

Ormelius-Sandblom, Elisabet LU (1997) In Lunder germanistische Forschungen 61.
Abstract
The aim of this thesis is to show how modal particles can be integrated into a modular description of language where grammar and pragmatics are seen as two independent but interacting modules. The modular approach is chosen because of the problems connected with a functional approach. On the syntactic level, it is assumed that modal particles are XPs. The fact that modal particles cannot occur alone in the initial field of a clause has, presumably, semantic-pragmatic reasons. It is also argued that the many positions possible for modal particles in a clause can be accounted for by assuming that they are generated in one special position in the (theoretical) syntactic structure, namely as adjuncts to the highest VP, and that other... (More)
The aim of this thesis is to show how modal particles can be integrated into a modular description of language where grammar and pragmatics are seen as two independent but interacting modules. The modular approach is chosen because of the problems connected with a functional approach. On the syntactic level, it is assumed that modal particles are XPs. The fact that modal particles cannot occur alone in the initial field of a clause has, presumably, semantic-pragmatic reasons. It is also argued that the many positions possible for modal particles in a clause can be accounted for by assuming that they are generated in one special position in the (theoretical) syntactic structure, namely as adjuncts to the highest VP, and that other constituents may move past them for information structural reasons that have to do with the interaction of the grammatical focus-background structure and the pragmatic theme-rheme structure. In the light of the differences between the various occurrences of the words ja, doch and schon, modal particles are regarded as a category of their own, separated from categories such as adverbs, focus particles and sentence equivalents. On the semantic level, it is shown that the modular approach makes it possible to minimalistically assume one semantic form per modal particle, irrespective of stress. In the case of the modal particles ja, doch and schon, it is argued that they are non-referential and non-attitudinal. It is suggested that, in view of their common feature, ‘affirmative1, they be analysed as expressions of facticity. They are represented by an operator in a duality group based on the operator FAKT. The meaning is compositionally integrated into the meaning of a clause at the level of semantic form, where it takes scope over the proposition [e INST p]. It interacts with other modal particles and sentence adverbials, the order of which shows the scope relations. Finally, on the pragmatic level, it is maintained that there is no inherent connection between modal particles and the focus-background structure or the theme-rheme structure. Moreover, modal particles do not even seem to be included in the theme-rheme structure. However, they take part in the focus-background structure and may be focussed themselves. The functions of modal particles are derived from their meaning in interaction with the illocutionary force or the sentence mood, the Principle of Relevance, and stress. The functions thus derived are a strengthening or a weakening effect on assertions, the triggering of implicatures, and the indication of the type of relation between the utterance concerned and the context. (Less)
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author
opponent
  • Professor König, Ekkehard, Berlin
organization
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
sentence mood, asser, illocutionary force, ja, German modal particles, doch, schon, syntax, semantics, pragmatics, XP, adjunct of VP, non-attitudinal, non-referential, affirmative, adversative, facticity, focus-background structure, theme-rheme structure, German language and literatur, Tyska (språk och litteratur)
in
Lunder germanistische Forschungen
volume
61
pages
152 pages
publisher
The German department, Helgonabacken 14, 223 62 Lund
defense location
The German department, room 339
defense date
1997-05-30 10:15
external identifiers
  • other:ISRN: LUHSDF/HSTY--97/1012--SE+152
ISSN
0348-2146
ISBN
91-22-01755-0
language
German
LU publication?
yes
id
8f82dba7-5986-4f13-8b32-1d8320e17576 (old id 18331)
date added to LUP
2007-05-24 12:49:59
date last changed
2016-09-19 08:44:59
@phdthesis{8f82dba7-5986-4f13-8b32-1d8320e17576,
  abstract     = {The aim of this thesis is to show how modal particles can be integrated into a modular description of language where grammar and pragmatics are seen as two independent but interacting modules. The modular approach is chosen because of the problems connected with a functional approach. On the syntactic level, it is assumed that modal particles are XPs. The fact that modal particles cannot occur alone in the initial field of a clause has, presumably, semantic-pragmatic reasons. It is also argued that the many positions possible for modal particles in a clause can be accounted for by assuming that they are generated in one special position in the (theoretical) syntactic structure, namely as adjuncts to the highest VP, and that other constituents may move past them for information structural reasons that have to do with the interaction of the grammatical focus-background structure and the pragmatic theme-rheme structure. In the light of the differences between the various occurrences of the words ja, doch and schon, modal particles are regarded as a category of their own, separated from categories such as adverbs, focus particles and sentence equivalents. On the semantic level, it is shown that the modular approach makes it possible to minimalistically assume one semantic form per modal particle, irrespective of stress. In the case of the modal particles ja, doch and schon, it is argued that they are non-referential and non-attitudinal. It is suggested that, in view of their common feature, ‘affirmative1, they be analysed as expressions of facticity. They are represented by an operator in a duality group based on the operator FAKT. The meaning is compositionally integrated into the meaning of a clause at the level of semantic form, where it takes scope over the proposition [e INST p]. It interacts with other modal particles and sentence adverbials, the order of which shows the scope relations. Finally, on the pragmatic level, it is maintained that there is no inherent connection between modal particles and the focus-background structure or the theme-rheme structure. Moreover, modal particles do not even seem to be included in the theme-rheme structure. However, they take part in the focus-background structure and may be focussed themselves. The functions of modal particles are derived from their meaning in interaction with the illocutionary force or the sentence mood, the Principle of Relevance, and stress. The functions thus derived are a strengthening or a weakening effect on assertions, the triggering of implicatures, and the indication of the type of relation between the utterance concerned and the context.},
  author       = {Ormelius-Sandblom, Elisabet},
  isbn         = {91-22-01755-0},
  issn         = {0348-2146},
  keyword      = {sentence mood,asser,illocutionary force,ja,German modal particles,doch,schon,syntax,semantics,pragmatics,XP,adjunct of VP,non-attitudinal,non-referential,affirmative,adversative,facticity,focus-background structure,theme-rheme structure,German language and literatur,Tyska (språk och litteratur)},
  language     = {ger},
  pages        = {152},
  publisher    = {The German department, Helgonabacken 14, 223 62 Lund},
  school       = {Lund University},
  series       = {Lunder germanistische Forschungen},
  title        = {Die Modalpartikeln ja, doch und schon : Zu ihrer Syntax, Semantik und Pragmatik},
  volume       = {61},
  year         = {1997},
}