Spatial Demonstratives in English and Chinese
Text and Cognition
Yi’an Wu | Beijing Foreign Studies University
As a subject of universal appeal, spatial demonstratives have been studied extensively from a variety of disciplines. What marks the present study as distinct is that it is an English-Chinese comparative study set in a cognitive-linguistic framework and that the methodology features a parallel corpora-based, discourse analysis approach. The framework illuminates the nature of the demonstratives’ basic and extended meaning and use, the connections between them, and the mechanisms that govern and constrain their trends of extension. The corpora place the English and Chinese demonstratives in comparable discourse contexts and processes, providing an “ecological” environment for the observation of how their behavior fits into the respective structural and discourse systems of the two languages. The study also illuminates important issues such as the subjectivity of language, language as a representational system and a vehicle of communication, the interface between form and function, and the role of context in discourse comprehension.
[Pragmatics & Beyond New Series, 126] 2004. xviii, 236 pp.
Publishing status: Available
© John Benjamins Publishing Company
Table of Contents
Preface | p. ix
Introduction | p. xi
Acknowledgements | p. xiii
List of tables | p. xv
The figure | p. xvi
Conventions and abbreviations | p. xvii
1. Introduction | p. 1
2. The nature of the spatial demonstratives | p. 27
3. Spatial demonstratives in real space | p. 59
4. Spatial demonstratives in displaced contexts: Similar trends of extension | p. 77
5. Spatial demonstratives in displaced contexts: Structural constraints on the similar trends of extension | p. 141
Concluding remarks | p. 201
Notes | p. 205
Appendix | p. 225
Index | p. 229
“Wu's Spatial Demonstratives in English and Chinese is one of the few book-length studies on the topic and a particularly careful one which is empirically rich and theoretically innovative. [...] In addition to micro level discussions of emperical language use, this book makes both theoretical and methodological contributions to our understanding of spatial demonstratives and will have its due impact on similar contrastive studies of linguistic issues.”
Jiajin Xu, National Research Centre for Foreign Language Education, China, in Chinese Language and Discourse Vol. 1:2 (2010)
“Nicely organized and meticulously researched, Wu's book offers valuable and interesting data regarding the uses of spatial demonstratives in both English and Mandarin to a wide set of linguistic audiences.”
Ring Mei-Han Low, University at Buffalo, USA, on Linguist List Vol. 16.1739 (2005)
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LAN009000: LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / General