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Title: Form and Function of Parasyntactic Presentation Structures.
Subtitle: A Corpus-based Study of Talk Units in Spoken English.
Written By: Joybrato Mukherjee
Series Title: Language and Computers Vol. 35

This study investigates prosody-syntax interactions from a functional perspective and based on authentic corpus data. Drawing on Halliday's well-known interpretation of the tone unit as an information unit, Halford's idea of a prosodically and syntactically defined talk unit and Esser's concept of abstract presentation structures, a modified talk unit model is developed. The talk unit is built up of one to many tone unit(s). The focus of both the quantitative and the functional analysis is on the interplay between prosodic status and syntactic status at tone unit boundaries by means of which talk units as parasyntactic units are established. The database is provided by a sample of about 50,000 words mainly taken from the London-Lund Corpus of Spoken English. The findings reveal that speakers have at their disposal and make use of prosody-syntax interactions in order to structure information effectively and to allow for or facilitate turn taking. This volume is not only of interest for corpus linguists, but for functionalists in general and intonationists in particular. In analysing the stylistic and pragmatic potential of talk units and applying corpus linguistic methodology, this study breaks new ground with regard to functional and empirical approaches to spoken English.

List of contents:
Ch. 1: Introduction: setting the aim of the present study in context
Ch. 2: Para syntactic elements and configurations in corpus linguistics
Ch. 3: Corpus data
Ch. 4: uantitative analysis
Ch. 5: Functional analysis I: information structure
Ch. 6: Functional analysis II: speaker interaction
Ch. 7: Summary and prospects for future research
References cited

Publication Year: 2001
Publisher: Rodopi
Review: Read the review
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Computational Linguistics
Text/Corpus Linguistics
Subject Language(s): English
Language Family(ies): New English
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Format: Hardback
ISBN: 9042012951
ISBN-13: N/A
Pages: 163 pp.
Prices: US $ 38.--