Degrees of Explicitness: Information Structure and the by John Leafgren

By John Leafgren

This e-book explores elements appropriate within the offerings audio system and writers make in regard to explicitness of connection with the themes and gadgets of their utterances. Bulgarian is a very felicitous objective language for this sort of research, because it possesses a wealthy stock of obtainable packaging options, starting from 0 reference, to varied under pressure and unstressed unmarried kinds, to real doubled ("reduplicated") buildings. The research systematically addresses the necessity to steer clear of referential and grammatical ambiguity, and the an important effect of emphasis. one other, and maybe best crucial issue is the prestige of what the communique is set, that is assessed on varied degrees. The ebook uses info from either released Bulgarian fiction and of course taking place oral conversations. the elemental similarities among those modes of communique with admire to noun word choice is established, yet causes also are proposed for the observable variations.

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Additional resources for Degrees of Explicitness: Information Structure and the Packaging of Bulgarian Subjects and Objects

Example text

Firbas (270) defines degree of communicative dynamism as “the extent to which the sentence element contributes to the development of the communication, to which it ‘pushes the communication forward’ as it were”. For Firbas the “rheme” of a sentence consists of the element or elements with the highest degree(s) of communicative dynamism, while the element(s) with the lowest degree(s) of communicative dynamism comprise(s) the “theme”. In these terms, focused elements, such as the underlined forms in (1-20) and (1-21), clearly have very high degrees of communicative dynamism.

Note in passing how frequently these DTs are packaged as non-overt (zero) subjects and as short form pronominal objects. Attention will be directed at this frequency in Chapters Two and Three. (1-40) Discourse Themes I tazi nosˇt mljakoto besˇe izpito. Ø Oprja se na brjasta, Ø ogleda se izplasˇena, da ne bi njakoj da ja e vidjal, i Ø zaba˘rza ka˘m ka˘sˇti. Ø Vleze v stajata, Ø spa˘na se v stolcˇeto — kotlenceto izdra˘ncˇa na pra˘stenija pod, — Ø zalitna, Ø sedna na oda˘rcˇeto. Sedem meseca izminaxa bez nego.

In some sense this tendency toward brevity might be viewed as having evolved into a system of conventional social norms or standards for discourse. One is reminded, for instance, of Grice’s 1975 “Cooperative Principle” for contributions to conversation. Under the heading “Manner” falls the maxim “Be brief (avoid unnecessary prolixity)” (46), and within the “Quantity” category we find the maxim “Do not make your contribution more informative than is required” (45). For Russian literary narrative, Nichols 1985 reflects the view that zero packaging is the preferred norm.

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