with propositional modifiers:

pogonotomygobbleAI and Robotics

Nov 15, 2013 (3 years and 11 months ago)

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How to do contrastive semantics
with propositional modifiers:

The case of hearsay adverbs


'Re
-
thinking
synonymy:

semantic
sameness and similarity

in languages and their
description‘

Helsinki, 28.10.2010


Björn

Wiemer

(Mainz)

Anna
Socka

(
Gda
ńsk
)

1


1.

INTRODUCTION

2

1.
Introduction


3

(cf. Dahl 2000)

2. OUR
CASE:
REPORTIVE

ADVERBS

IN POLISH AND GERMAN


AND THEIR “EPISTEMIC OVERTONES”

4

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”



O
ur

concern: the semantic description of a couple
of propositional modifiers indicating hearsay:


Pol.
rzekomo
,
jakoby
,
podobno
,


Germ
.
angeblich
,
vorgeblich
.


These hearsay markers have been claimed to
carry epistemic overtones by which the actual
speaker transmits his/her doubts into the
contents of the message referred to.


On first sight, these lexemes do so to a varying
extent.


5

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”







But:
Any
of the aforementioned hearsay markers
can become void of epistemic overtones in specific
contexts
.

6

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”


(
5)

Przy określaniu wymogów wizowych głównym
argumentem ma być nie poziom rozwoju albo więzi
historyczne z Unią, ale liczba nielegalnych imigrantów
przedostających się do krajów członkowskich UE. Według
niektórych dyplomatów państw Unii wyjątkowo trudny
może być zatem przypadek Rumunii, skąd
rzekomo

wciąż
napływają nowi imigranci.
(„
Rzeczpospolita

, 01.15.2000)





While defining visa requirements the main argument is not
to be the level of development or historical bonds with the
Union, but the number of illegal immigrants getting into the
EU member states. According to some diplomats from the
Union countries, exceptionally difficult may be the case of
Romania, from which
allegedly

new immigrants constantly
come in.’


7

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”


(7)
Durch
Chlorgas sind in
Räbke

in Niedersachsen 24
Menschen verletzt worden. Der
Schwimmeister

des
Freibades hatte bemerkt,
daß

das Gas aus einem Tank
austrat. Feuerwehren versuchten, mit Wasser das Chlor zu
binden. Für Anwohner bestand
angeblich

keine Gefahr.
(„Mannheimer Morgen

, 15.05.1998)



24 persons have been injured by chlorine in
Räbke

in Lower
Saxony. The beach guard noticed gas escaping from a tank.
Firemen tried to bind the gas to water. Local people were
allegedly

not at risk.’


8

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”






With
a pair (or set) of merely epistemic adverbs this opposition
results in certainty higher than 50% for the marked member
(‘probably’). The marked member of the
reportive

pair is supposed to
be simply neutral (‘reportedly’), thus close to 50%, since its unmarked
counterpart (‘allegedly’) regularly implies speaker’s distrust toward P
being true, i.e. an epistemic value below 50%.


9

(cf.
Ramat
/
Ricca

(1998:230)

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”





Pol
.
rzekomo

and Germ.
angeblich

lose their
epistemic overtones in (con)texts in which
speakers utter statements for which they can
be made
juridically

responsible.


10

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”


(9)

Francja
.
Oskarżony rosyjski marynarz. Przed sądem w mieście Brest
na zachodzie Francji rozpoczął się proces
[…]

drugiego dowódcy na
statku
Melbridge

Bilbao, który
rzekomo

nie zapobiegł osadzeniu
jednostki
na mieliźnie na wodach Zatoki
Mojańskiej
. 43
-
letni
Władimir
Czernyszow

został oskarżony o
spowodowanie
zagrożenia
życia i zdrowia załogi przez pogwałcenie podstawowych obowiązków
i zasad sztuki nawigacyjnej
-

napisano w akcie oskarżenia
.
(“
Rzeczpospolita
” 01.09
.
2002
)



France. Russian officer accused. The trial began in the city of Brest
in Western France of [...] an officer on the ship
Melbridge

Bilbao,
who
allegedly

did not prevent the ship from running aground in the
Bay of
Molene
. Vladimir
Tshernyshov
, aged 43, is accused of
endangering the lives of his fellow crew by flouting of basic duties
and rules of the art of navigation
-

the indictment states.’



11

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”


(10)


Das Gericht
läßt

derzeit auch jene bulgarische Freundin
Crapanzanos

suchen, die am Tatabend
angeblich

kurz vor dem
Opfer die Bar verließ. Für die Verteidigung ist denkbar,
daß

diese Frau die Täterin sein könnte.
[…]

Die Verhandlung wird
am Mittwoch um 9 Uhr fortgesetzt
.

(“
Mannheimer

Morgen

,
14.07.1995)


‘'The court is ordering a search for
Crapanzano's

Bulgarian girl
friend, who, on the night of the act,
allegedly

left the bar
shortly before the victim. It is conceivable to the defense that
this woman could have been the perpetrator. The trial will
continue on Wednesday at 9 a.m.



12

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”


In German the sentence adverb most common in such contexts is
mutmaßlich
:


It does not express doubt but rather affirmation.


It provides a reasoning based somehow on sensory data.


This is often an inference of an instance mentioned in context (e.g. the police),
which is repeated by the actual speaker.

(
11)

Britische
und russische Ermittler befragten gestern in Moskau drei Stunden lang
den Schlüsselzeugen in der Affäre, Andrej
Lugowoi
. Der Ex
-
Geheimdienstler sagte
danach der Agentur Interfax, er sei als Zeuge befragt worden.
Lugowoi

hatte am 1.
November das Treffen in London organisiert, bei dem
Litwinenko

mutmaßlich

mit
dem radioaktiven Polonium 210 vergiftet wurde
.

(„
Mannheimer

Morgen

, 12.12.2006)



Yesterday

British
and

Russian

investigators

questioned

for

three

hours

Andrey
Lugovoi
, a
key

witness

in
the

affair
.
This

former

intelligence

member

then

told

the

Interfax
news

agency

that

he
had

been

questioned

as

a
witness
. On November 1st
Lugovoi

arranged

a
meeting

in London
at

which

Litvinienko

was
presumably

poisoned

with

radioactive

polonium
-
210
.’

13

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”


14

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones



15

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”



In German,
reportive

expressions are the sentence adverbs
angeblich

and
vorgeblich

and the modal verb constructions
wollen

/
sollen

+ infinitive.


16

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”


17

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”



The lexicalization degree seems to be the reason why
angeblich

is used instead of the modal verb construction:


in clauses already containing another modal verb


in clauses containing a verb in the subjunctive (or the analytic
würde
-
construction
)


when you speak in the present tense about present or future situations


in headlines


if there is an attributive adjective in scope of the hearsay marker


if there is already a
sollen
+infinitive

in the previous sentence


Almost 2/3 of the examples in our corpus in which no
epistemic doubt arises, display one of these situations.

18

2.

Our
case:
reportive

adverbs in Polish and German
and their “epistemic overtones”




Compared to
rzekomo
, the epistemic overtone of
distrust carried by
angeblich

seems to be weaker.


angeblich

is equally likely to appear in different
registers or text genres for which in Polish individual
lexemes are preferred (e.g.,
podobno

in colloquial
speech,
jakoby

in polemical discourse).

19

3. A PROPOSAL OF HOW TO EXPLAIN
THE FACTS



the relation between
reportive

value and epistemic judgment as a
generalized conversational
implicature

(3.1)



the specific kind of
implicature

responsible for the whole mechanism
(3.2)



trying to gather the harvest (3.3)


20

3.1.

Epistemic overtones as results of generalized
conversational
implicatures


“ (a)
An
implicature

I from utterance U is
particularized

iff

U implicates I only by virtue of
specific contextual assumptions that would not
invariably or even normally obtain.



(b) An
implicature

I is
generalized

iff

U implicates I
unless there are unusual specific contextual
assumptions that defeat it.”
(
Levinson 2000: 16)

3. A proposal of how to explain the facts

21

3.2.

Which specific kind(s) of GCI is/are at work?


3.2.1.

Principles based on the Quantity maxim:

(21)

Speaker: Do not say less than is required (bearing

the I
-
principle in mind).



Addressee:

What is not said is not the case.


(Huang 2007:41)

3.2.1.1. based on Horn
-
scale (Horn’s Q
-
principle),



or Q
-
scalar
implicatures
?

Q
-
scalar

: <x, y>

y +> Q
-
scalar


x


(ibid. 42)


3. A proposal of how to explain the facts

22

(22)

The soup is not only warm, but hot
.



She’s not just good, she’s excellent
.



That’s not only bad, but
desastrous
.

(23)

*
He has broken his leg
not reportedly, but

allegedly
.



*
Złamał

sobie

nogę

nie

podobno
,
tylko

rzekomo
.

(24)

*
Złamał sobie nogę podobno,
a nawet

rzekomo
.



‘He has broken his leg
podobno
, in fact
rzekomo
.’



*
He apparently / reportedly has broken his leg,
in

fact

allegedly
.

(25)

A speaker, in saying ‘...
p

...’, conversationally
impli
-

cates

that (for all he or she knows) ‘...
at most

p
...’




3. A proposal of how to explain the facts

23

3.2.1.2. based on clausal
implicature
?

Q
-
clausal

: <X(p), Y(p)>


Y(p) +> Q
-
clausal

p,

p
(Huang 2007:42)


(26)

I
know

that John is away
.

(= X(p))

(27)

I
believe

that John is away
. (= Y(p))

(28a)

<necessarily
p
, possibly
p
>

(28b)

It’s possible that Buddhism is the world’s oldest living

religion
.

(28b)

+> ‘It’s possible that Buddhism is the world’s oldest living

religion, and it’s possible that Buddhism isn’t the world’s

oldest living religion.’


or:

(28b')

+> ‘It’s not necessarily the case that Buddhism is the

world’s oldest living religion.’
(ibid. 43)

(29a)

Podobno

P
.

(29b)

+> ‘... It’s possible that P is true, and it’s possible that P isn’t

true.’

3. A proposal of how to explain the facts

24

3.2.2.


based on the I(
nformativeness
)
-
Principle?

I
-
scale

: [x, y]


y +> I x

(Huang 2007:47)

(30)

Speaker: Do not say more than is required

(bearing the Q
-
principle in mind).



Addressee:

What is generally said is

stereotypically and specifically exemplified.
(ibid. 46)

(31)

A speaker in saying ‘...

p

...’, conversationally

implicates that (for all he or she knows) ‘...
more

than

p
...’. (vs. (25))




3. A proposal of how to explain the facts

25

Typical cases:

(32a)

p and q +> and then / therefore q

(32b)

John pressed the spring and
(+> then)

the drawer opened

/ and
(+> thereby)

caused the drawer to open
.



(Huang 2007:47)

(33a)

frame
-
based inference

(33b)

Mary pushed the cart to the checkout
.



+> Mary pushed the cart full of groceries to the

supermarket checkout in order to pay for them (and so

on).



(ibid.)


3. A proposal of how to explain the facts

26

3.2.3. based on the M(
anner
)
-
Principle?

M
-
scale

: {x, y}


y +> M

x

(Huang 2007:51)


(34a)

John stopped the car
.



+> John stopped the car in the usual manner.

(34b)

John caused the car to stop
.



+> John stopped the car in an unusual way, for

example, by bumping into a wall.
(ibid.)


3. A proposal of how to explain the facts

27

3.3.

Trying to gather the harvest

Quantity
-
based

(21)

Speaker: Do not say less than is required

(bearing the I
-
principle in mind).



Addressee:

What is not said is not the case.


Informativeness
-
based

(30)

Speaker: Do not say more than is required

(bearing the Q
-
principle in mind).



Addressee:

What is generally said is

stereotypically and specifically exemplified.

3. A proposal of how to explain the facts

28

(35)

Implicature

cancellation procedure


background

assumptions


contextual

factors


semantic

entailments


conversational

implicatures


Q
-
implicatures



Q
-
clausal

implicatures



Q
-
scalar

implicatures


M
-
implicatures


I
-
implicatures

(
Gazdar

1979, Huang 2007:54)


--


Knowledge about possible legal consequences of an assertion
in a news report belongs to background knowledge of the
journalist (and probably his/her reader, too), as does
knowledge about the significance and function of different
text genres.


3. A proposal of how to explain the facts

29

4. CONSEQUENCES



How can
reportive

adverbs be described in the lexicon? (4.1)


How can
reportive

adverbs be compared across languages? (4.2)


Can the methods and principles of lexical typology be extended to the
analysis of
reportive

adverbs? (4.3)


30

4.1. How can
reportive

adverbs be described in the

lexicon?

(36a)

Podobno / jakoby / rzekomo P
.

(36b)

(
i
) ‘I want to say what someone else says.’


(=
reportive

component)



(ii) ‘I say: P.’



(iii) ‘I don’t say I know that P.’ (= epistemic



component, agnostic stance)



(iv) ‘I think that other people can think the same.’

(
Wiemer

2006, cf.
Wierzbicka

2006)




4. Consequences

31

A second epistemic component


(36c)

(v) ‘I think that P
might be / can be / is
not true.’



can now be removed to a system of pragmatic
principles which in section 3 we tried to reduce to
GCI.




4. Consequences

32

4.2.

How can
reportive

adverbs be compared across

languages?

(37) *
Probably he will come, probably he will not
.

(38)
Possibly he will come, possibly he will not
.






(Ramat/
Ricca

1998: Fn. 29)


(39)

Engl. *
Allegedly he will come, allegedly he will

not
.

(40a)

Pol.*
Podobno

przyjdzie
,
podobno

nie

przyjdzie
.

(40b)

*
Rzekomo

przyjdzie
,
rzekomo

nie

przyjdzie
.

(41)

Germ.
Wahrscheinlich

/ *
Unwahrscheinlich

kommt

er
.



Engl.

Probably / *Improbably he will come
.



Pol.
Prawdopodobnie

/ *
Nieprawdopodobnie




przyjdzie
.



4. Consequences

33

4.3. How should a lexical typology of
reportive

adverbs

look like?

Evans (2010: 509) distinguishes:



etic

grids’ by which we establish a language
-
independent
calculus of logically imaginable possibilities “regardless of
whether or not individual languages group them together” (an
onomasiological

task);



emic

grids’ (or descriptions) which aim at capturing “what is
common to all members of a category from within the
perspective of a particular language” (a
semasiological

task).

Synonymy (or closeness of meaning) presupposes a
semasiological

viewpoint, but for purposes of
crosslinguistic

comparison it is essential to project the
concrete items of the compared language onto a
conceptual (i.e.
onomasiological
) framework.



4. Consequences

34

REFERENCES


35

Aikhenvald
, A.Y. 2004:
Evidentiality
. Oxford etc.: Oxford U.P.

Croft, W. 2003
2
:
Typology and Universals
. Cambridge etc.: Cambridge U.P.

Dahl, Ö.

2000) The tense
-
aspect systems of European languages in a typological
perspective. In: Dahl, Ö. (ed.):
Tense and Aspect in the Languages of Europe
.
Berlin,
New York: Mouton de
Gruyter
, 3
-
25.

Diewald
, G.,
Smirnova
, E. 2010:
Indirekte Rede zwischen Modus, Modalität und
Evidentialität
.

Paper
read

at

the

DSWI Conference in
Rome
.

Dik
, S.C.,
Hengeveld
, K.,
Vester
, E., Vet, C. 1990: The hierarchical structure of the clause
and the typology of adverbial satellites. In: J.
Nuyts
, M.
Bolkestein

& C. Vet (eds.):
Layers and levels of representation in language theory
. Amsterdam, Philadelphia:
Benjamins
, 25
-
70.

Evans, N. 2010: Semantic typology. In: J. Jung Sung (ed.):
The Oxford Handbook of
Linguistic Typology
. Oxford etc.: Oxford U.P., 504
-
533. (to appear)

Gazdar
, G. 1979:
Pragmatics:
implicature
, presupposition and logical form.

London:
Academic Press.

Huang, Y. 2007:
Pragmatics
. Oxford

etc.: Oxford U.P.

Koptjevskaja
-
Tamm, M. 2008: Approaching lexical typology. In: M.
Vanhove

(ed.):
From
Polysemy

to Semantic Change (Towards a typology of lexical semantic associations)
.
Amsterdam, Philadelphia:
Benjamins
, 3
-
52.

References

36

Koptjevskaja
-
Tamm, M.,
Rakhlina
, E. 2006: “Some like it hot”: On semantics of
temperature adjectives in Russian and Swedish.
STUF

59
-
2 (Special Issue on
Lexicon
in a Typological and Contrastive Perspective
, ed. by G.
Giannoulopoulou

and T.
Leuschner
), 253
-
269.

Levinson, S.C. 2000:
Presumptive meanings. The theory of generalized conversational
implicature
.

Cambridge, M.A.: MIT Press.

Levinson, S.C. 2007
18
:
Pragmatics
. Cambridge etc.: Cambridge U.P.

Ramat, P. & D.
Ricca

1998: Sentence adverbs in the languages of Europe. In: van
der

Auwera
, J.,
Dónall

P.Ó.
Baoill

(eds.):
Adverbial Constructions in the Languages of
Europe
. Berlin, New York: Mouton de
Gruyter
, 187
-
275.

Socka
, A. 2010:
Reportative

Partikeln in kontrastiver Sicht (Polnisch


Deutsch). In: A.
Kątny

& A.
Socka

(
eds
.):
Modalität /
Temporalität

in kontrastiver und typologischer
Sicht
. Frankfurt/M. etc.: Lang, 239
-
264.

Wiemer
, B. 2006: Particles,
parentheticals
, conjunctions and prepositions as
evidentiality

markers in contemporary Polish (A first exploratory study).
Studies in
Polish Linguistics

3, 5
-
67.

Wierzbicka
, A. 2006:
English. Meaning and Culture
. Oxford: Oxford U.P.


Corpus base

IDS


Electronic online corpus of the
Institut

für

Deutsche
Sprache

(Mannheim)

NKJP


Electronic online National Corpus of Polish

PWN


Electronic online corpus of the PWN publishing company

References

37

THANK YOU!


38