WH-words are not ‘interrogative’ pronouns : the derivation of interrogative interpretations for constituent questions

I discuss the status of WH-words for interrogative interpretations, and show that the derivation of constituent questions evolves from a specific interplay of syntactic and semantic representations with pragmatics. I arg
I discuss the status of WH-words for interrogative interpretations, and show that the derivation of constituent questions evolves from a specific interplay of syntactic and semantic representations with pragmatics. I argue that WH-pronouns are not ‘interrogative’. Rather, they are underspecified elements; due to this underspecification, WH-words can form a constitutive part not only of interrogative, but also of exclamative and declarative clauses. WH-words introduce a variable of a particular conceptual domain into the semantic representation. Accordingly, they have to be specified for interpretation. Different WH-contexts give rise to different interpretations. In a cross-linguistic overview, I discuss the characteristic elements contributing to the derivation of interrogatives. I argue that specific particles or their phonologically empty counterparts in the head of CP contribute the interrogative aspect. The speech act of ‘asking’ is then carried out via an intonational contour that identifies a question. By default, this intonational contour operates on interrogative sentences; however, other sentence formats – in particular, those of declarative sentences – are possible as well. The distinction of (a) grammatical (syntactic, semantic and phonological) sentence formats for interrogative and declarative sentences, and (b) intonational contours serving the discrimination of speech acts like questions and assertions, can be related to psychological and neurological evidence.
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Metadaten
Author:Heike Wiese
URN:urn:nbn:de:hebis:30-1150587
Document Type:Article
Language:English
Date of Publication (online):2010/04/26
Year of first Publication:2001
Publishing Institution:Univ.-Bibliothek Frankfurt am Main
Release Date:2010/04/26
SWD-Keyword:Grammatik
Source:http://www.uni-potsdam.de/fileadmin/projects/germanistik-07/Publikationen/HWLpl2000.pdf ; Paper presented at the International Conference of the North-West Centre for Linguistics Liverpool, 1999 ; (in:) Michael Hoey; N. Scott: Questions: Multiple Perspectives on a
HeBIS PPN:225057573
Dewey Decimal Classification:400 Sprache
Sammlungen:Linguistik
Linguistic-Classification:Linguistik-Klassifikation: Grammatikforschung / Grammar research
Licence (German):License Logo Veröffentlichungsvertrag für Publikationen

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