The emergence of the comment clause
The main aim of Chapter 3 is to describe forced interpretation as a motivation for the emergence of functions. A language may encode in its grammatical structure formal means to ensure that the listener infer the meaning desired by the speaker and only the meaning desired by the speaker. The importance of this motivation for the emergence of functions is that most likely it is present in many functional domains. The second aim of the Chapter is to demonstrate that as a result of the postulated motivation, an identical function can emerge independently in the grammatical systems of related and unrelated languages. Moreover, languages can independently come to use the same type of formal means to code identical functions. The Chapter demonstrates that several languages have encoded in their grammatical systems a ‘comment clause’ that forces the listener to interpret the clause with a preceding clause or with some situation. Unrelated languages, independently, came to use similar means to code the comment clause.
Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.
If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.