Chapter published in:Studies at the Grammar-Discourse Interface: Discourse markers and discourse-related grammatical phenomena
Edited by Alexander Haselow and Sylvie Hancil
[Studies in Language Companion Series 219] 2021
► pp. 78–100
On divergent paths and functions of ‘background’-based discourse markers in Korean
This paper analyzes two polyfunctional discourse markers (DMs) in Korean, kulssey and kuntey, which share lexical and grammatical sources, with the meaning of ‘at the time’ for kulssey and ‘at the place’ for kuntey. They denote the background of an action/event (‘in such circumstances’), which is their primary meaning when used as connective adverbs. Despite these source commonalities, when they developed into DMs, their functional differences are pronounced, only with a few shared functions. They show a certain degree of positional preferences by function, but at a more comprehensive level, left- and right-periphery do not show rigid functional dichotomy with respect to subjectification and intersubjectification, often hypothesized in the literature. Instead, the role of prosody is more crucial.
Keywords: discourse marker, pragmatic inference, divergent functions, functional network, Korean
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