Anaphora

Overview

Understanding any communication depends on the listener or reader recognizing that some words refer to what has already been said or written (his, its, he, there, etc.). This mode of reference, anaphora, involves complicated cognitive and syntactic processes, which people usually perform unerringly, but which present formidable problems for the linguist and cognitive scientist trying to explain precisely how comprehension is achieved.
Yan Huang provides an extensive and ...

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Overview

Understanding any communication depends on the listener or reader recognizing that some words refer to what has already been said or written (his, its, he, there, etc.). This mode of reference, anaphora, involves complicated cognitive and syntactic processes, which people usually perform unerringly, but which present formidable problems for the linguist and cognitive scientist trying to explain precisely how comprehension is achieved.
Yan Huang provides an extensive and accessible overview of the major contemporary issues surrounding anaphora and gives a critical survey of the many and diverse contemporary approaches to it. He provides by far the fullest cross-linguistic account yet published: Dr Huang's survey and analysis are based on a rich collection of data drawn from around 450 of the world's languages.

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Yan Huang is Reader in Linguistics, Department of Linguistic Science, University of Reading.

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Table of Contents

Typologies of anaphora
Introduction Typologies of anaphora Anaphora and syntactic categories Anaphora and truth-conditions Anaphora and contexts Anaphora and discourse: reference-tracking systems Organisation of the book
Syntactic approaches to anaphora
Classical Chomskyan theory of anaphora Typology of NPs Binding theory Control theory Revisions and alternatives Summary Null subjects and null objects Null subjects Null objects Summary Long-distance reflexivisation The phenomenon Properties and theoretical issues Long-distance reflexivisation in generative grammar Summary Conclusion
Semantic approaches to anaphora
VP-ellipsis Definition and properties Theoretical issues Two general approaches: syntactically oriented versus semantically oriented Summary Binding and control: some semantic alternatives Binding Control Summary Logophoricity Background Logophoric pronouns in African languages Long-distance reflexives in East Asian languages Discourse representation Summary Conclusion
Pragmatic approaches to anaphora
A neo-Gricean pragmatic theory A revised neo-Gricean pragmatic theory of anaphora The general pattern of anaphora A revised neo-Gricean pragmatic theory Application Summary Some other pragmatic/cognitive/functional approaches Relevance theory Accessibility theory Prague School functionalism Summary
'Syntactic' versus 'pragmatic': a new typology of language?
The pragmaticness of anaphora in a pragmatic language The prominence of 'Chinese-style' topic constructions in a pragmatic language Explaining the differences: parametric or typological?
Summary Conclusion
Switch-reference and discourse anaphora
Switch-reference The phenomenon Switch-reference and related phenomena Two general approaches and beyond: syntactically oriented versus semantically oriented, and perhaps pragmatically oriented Summary Discourse anaphora The problem of anaphoric distribution in discourse The topic continuity or distance-interference model The hierarchy model The cognitive model The pragmatic model Summary Conclusion
Conclusions
Notes
References
Index of names
Index of languages and language families
Index of subjects

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