Sociobiological Bases of Information Structure
Viviana Masia | University of Roma Tre
The book tackles the sociobiological bases of Information Structure (IS) inquiring both its evidential and neurobiological underpinnings in human communication. Its purpose is to delve into the epistemic and neurocognitive rationales behind the realization of informational hierarchies in a sentence. The book zooms in on an interplay, that between IS and evidentiality, that has never been explored in IS studies and seeks to recast IS phenomena in an epistemological perspective. The neurocognitive approaches discussed propose neurophysiological investigations on IS processing, both with ERP and ERS vs. ERD measurements. In its overall structure and general purposes, the book is conceived for interested scholars working in the fields of linguistics, neuropragmatics, experimental psychology, philosophy of language and cognitive sciences in general, and it adds some further contribution to ongoing psycholinguistic and neurolinguistic experimental research on the processing of topic-focus and presupposition-assertion dichotomies.
[Advances in Interaction Studies, 9] 2017. xxi, 193 pp.
Publishing status: Available
© John Benjamins
Table of Contents
List of tables | pp. xi–11
List of figures | pp. xiii–13
Preface | pp. xv–xx
Acknowledgments | p. xxi
Chapter 1. Presupposition and assertion: Theoretical overviews | pp. 1–24
Chapter 2. Topic, focus, given and new: Theoretical overviews | pp. 25–50
Chapter 3. Sociobiological perspectives: For a unified account of evidentiality and information structure | pp. 51–80
Chapter 4. Experimental perspectives on information structure processing: A literature review | pp. 81–109
Chapter 5. Experimental perspectives on information structure processing: Two electrophysiological studies | pp. 111–142
Chapter 6. A biolinguistic perspective on information structure | pp. 143–172
References | pp. 173–188
Index | pp. 189–193
“This book opens a new perspective in the studies on both Evidentiality and Information Structure, in that it shows that the two categories are strongly related. Moreover, it is among the first studies accounting for neuroscientific inquiry on Information Structure categories such as presuppositions.”
Edoardo Lombardi Vallauri, University of Roma Tre
“By combining together a solid experimental design in neurolinguistics with a fresh look at evidentiality as pragmatic information managing, which goes beyond the traditional restriction to information source, Viviana Masia has produced a thought-provoking piece of research that will be of interest both to linguists and neuro-/psycholinguists.”
Mario Squartini, University of Turin
“The research presents an updated survey of the main theoretical approaches dedicated to the analysis of Information Structure. The focus is on the relationship between evidentiality and the essential properties of information units, trying a new path for their definition. A specific added value of the work is its strong look to the neurocognitive bases that support the decoding of Information Structure, both in isolated utterances and in the wider social context of the discourse. Coherently with the idea that presupposition is at the basis of topicalization, her experiments show that the best processing of topicalized and focused information is the outcome of expectations derived from the listener’s model. Finding an evolutionistic explanation for Information Structure is the final goal of the research.”
Emanuela Cresti & Massimo Moneglia, University of Florence
Cited by 5 other publications
Cresti, Emanuela & Massimo Moneglia
2018. The definition of the TOPIC within Language into Act Theory and its identification in spontaneous speech corpora. Revue Romane. Langue et littérature. International Journal of Romance Languages and Literatures 53:1 ► pp. 30 ff.
Langsford, Steven, Rachel G. Stephens, John C. Dunn & Richard L. Lewis
Lombardi Vallauri, Edoardo
2022. Remarks on information structure marking asymmetries. In When Data Challenges Theory [Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today, 273], ► pp. 58 ff.
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Main BIC Subject
CFG: Semantics, Pragmatics, Discourse Analysis
Main BISAC Subject
LAN009000: LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / General