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Communicative Functions and Linguistic Forms in Speech Interaction: Volume 156

Communicative Functions and Linguistic Forms in Speech Interaction: Volume 156

by Klaus J. Kohler


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Prosody is generally studied at a separate linguistic level from syntax and semantics. It analyses phonetic properties of utterances such as pitch and prominence, and orders them into phonological categories such as pitch accent, boundary tone, and metrical grid. The goal is to define distinctive formal differentiators of meanings in utterances. But what these meanings are is either excluded or a secondary concern. This book takes the opposite approach, asking what are the basic categories of meaning that speakers want to transmit to listeners? And what formal means do they use to achieve it? It places linguistic form in functions of speech communication, and takes into account all the formal exponents - sounds, words, syntax, prosodies - for specific functional coding. Basic communicative functions such as 'questioning' may be universally assumed, but their coding by linguistic bundles varies between languages. A comparison of function-form systems in English, German and Mandarin Chinese shows this formal diversity for universal functions.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781107170728
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 10/26/2017
Series: Cambridge Studies in Linguistics Series , #156
Pages: 318
Product dimensions: 6.14(w) x 9.25(h) x 0.71(d)

About the Author

Klaus J. Kohler is Emeritus Professor at the Christian-Albrechts Universität zu Kiel, Germany, and Honorary Professor at Nanjing Normal University, China. He was editor of Phonetica: International Journal of Phonetic Science, for thirty-five years.

Table of Contents

Introduction; 1. Speech communication in human interaction; 2. Prosody in a functional framework: the Kiel Intonation Model (KIM); 3. The representation function; 4. The appeal function; 5. The expression function; 6. Linguistic form of communicative functions in language comparison.

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