French Television Talk
What tenses for past time?
On the basis of a transcribed French television corpus made of two news bulletins, two chat shows and one literary programme recorded in February 2003, this paper explores the claim that passé simple (PS) may still be used in prepared oral discourse (Pfister 1974). The corpus does not provide support for that use on television, but it seems to suggest a shift from temporal to aspectual features in French television talk: a perfective presentation prevails on a past presentation. This trend would need to be confirmed by a larger television corpus, tested in other types of oral discourse and tested on written corpora.
Keywords: French past tenses, oral French, perfective aspect
Published online: 20 February 2006
Cited by 4 other publications
Arhar Holdt, Špela, Kaja Dobrovoljc & Nataša Logar
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