Article published in:Insubordination
Edited by Nicholas Evans and Honoré Watanabe
[Typological Studies in Language 115] 2016
► pp. 145–170
Chapter 6. Insubordinated conditionals in spoken and non-spoken Italian
In this chapter, Italian free conditionals are located within the general framework of Insubordination (Evans 2007). By means of the data contained in spoken and non-spoken Italian corpora, a series of questions related to the issue are addressed. The question regarding the extent to which the use of such constructions can be considered conventionalized is answered by considering the frequency of the construction as compared to the general frequency of if-clauses; its different diffusion in spoken and written uses and, among them, dialogic vs. non-dialogic situations; intonation patterns, conveying a series of pragmatic functions and characterizing if-clauses without an (overt) main clause as specific speech acts; conventionalization of meaning and function.The hypothesis that in language there may be a permanent tendency to creating insubordinated conditionals is explored in relation to such pressures as phonetical economy, communicative economy/ergonomy exploiting vagueness, the politeness function of “being incomplete”, and the possible preference for the iconic order “cause-consequence”.
Published online: 18 November 2016
Almela Pérez, Ramón
Brown, Penelope & Levinson, Stephen C
LIP = de Mauro, Tullio, Mancini, Federico,Vedovelli, Massimo & Voghera, Miriam 1993 Lessico di frequenza dell’italiano parlato. Milano: ETAS libri. http://badip.uni-graz.at/en/search
Lombardi Vallauri, Edoardo
Montolío Durán, Estrella
Quirk, Randolph, Greenbaum, Sidney, Leech, Geoffrey & Svartvik, Jan
2002 From silence to grammar: Grammaticalization and ellipsis in Korean. Paper presented at the conference: “New Reflexions on Grammaticalization II” , Amsterdam, 3–6 April.
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