Publication details [#17820]
Rouchota, Villy and Andreas H. Jucker, eds. 1998. Current issues in relevance theory. (Pragmatics and Beyond: New Series 58). John Benjamins. 368 pp.
Book – edited volume
The papers in this volume address some of the central issues in the relevance theoretic research programme, such as the distinction between conceptual and procedural meaning in order to account for the semantics of discourse connectives, for the role of intonation in utterance interpretation, and for focus phenomena. Other papers explore the role of the relevance theoretic notion of metarepresentation in utterance interpretation and prove its usefulness in the study of both linguistic topics such as epistemic modality and conditional clauses, and in the reanalysis of literary issues such as verbal humor. Some of the central pragmatic issues dealt with are the interpretation of semantically underdetermined linguistic forms, the role and nature of pragmatic inference, the distinction between truth-conditional and non-truth-conditional meaning and the separation between explicitly and implicitly communicated meaning. The theory's application to sociolinguistic topics is assessed and developed in an inspired account of phatic communication; and the theory's usefulness in accounting for certain types of 'grammatical' constraints is explored in relation to certain restrictions in the interpretation of indefinite descriptions.