This book "fills the unquestionable need for a comprehensive and up-to-date handbook on the fast-developing field of pragmatics" and "includes contributions from many of the principal figures in a wide variety of fields of pragmatic research as well as some up-and-coming pragmatists."
The apparent flexibility of words in Classical Chinese with respect to traditional word classes has always posed a problem in the description of this language and has caused much misunderstanding. Moreover, it has been long understudied, along with the closely related theory of Classical Chinese word classes. This work seeks to summarize previous research on this issue, re- orientate the discourse and construe a new interpretative paradigm that would lead to a more complex and realistic view. It is principally based on a multi- disciplinary approach and supported by the theoretical framework of cognitive linguistics. The study deals with the very conception of word classes, but its focus lies in the analysis of verbal and adverbial functions of nouns.