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LINGUIST List 18.990

Mon Apr 02 2007

Diss: Semantics: Oshima: Perspectives in Reported Discourse

Editor for this issue: Hunter Lockwood <hunterlinguistlist.org>

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        1.    David Oshima, Perspectives in Reported Discourse

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Message 1: Perspectives in Reported Discourse
Date: 31-Mar-2007
From: David Oshima <davidyogmail.com>
Subject: Perspectives in Reported Discourse

Institution: Stanford University
Program: Department of Linguistics
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2006

Author: David Yoshikazu Oshima

Dissertation Title: Perspectives in Reported Discourse

Dissertation URL: http://davidyo.net/publications.aspx

Linguistic Field(s): Semantics

Dissertation Director:
Ivan A Sag

Dissertation Abstract:

This thesis addresses issues regarding propositional attitudes, with an
overarching theme of how the speaker's choice of perspective (between his
own and the reported agent's) manifests itself in attitude reports. I take
up four dimensions of perspective: analytic, logophoric, deictic, and
empathic. The analytic perspective concerns the de re and de dicto modes of
attitude reports. I defend the 'sententialist' approach to the de re/de
dicto distinction over the 'scopal' approach, and argue that the de dicto
mode reflects the fact that the speaker chooses descriptive terms
(linguistic forms) from the reported agent's perspective.

The logophoric perspective concerns the de se/non-de se opposition, which
has recently attracted wide attention in the light of new cross-linguistic
data. Building on the widely accepted view that the object of a de se
report is a Kaplanian propositional character, I develop a solution to two
problems known in the literature: (i) how to capture the relation between
what the complement clause denotes and what the 'original'
utterance/belief represents in a generalized way, and (ii) how to properly
restrict occurrences and possible interpretations of indexical expressions.

The deictic and empathic perspectives concern the choice of the reference
point(s) for deictic predicates (e.g., go and come) and the determination
of empathy relations (a la Kuno). First, I observe that the pragmatic
meanings associated with deictic predicates/empathy-loaded expressions are
presuppositional, and further point out that their projection pattern with
respect to an attitude predicate has interesting correlations with the
choice of the speaker's perspective. Then, I propose to treat deictic
predicates/empathy-loaded expressions as indexicals, which refer to either
the external context of utterance or a secondary context (In this sense,
the deictic and empathic perspectives can be understood as subcomponents of
the logophoric perspective.)

Towards the end of the thesis, I discuss factors that affect the possible
or favored choice of perspective, including (i) the interaction among the
subtypes of perspective (e.g., the bias for the consistency of
perspective), and (ii) the implicational hierarchy of the semantic types of
attitude predicates.

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