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By Karin Aijmer

The multifunctionality of pragmatic markers makes it tricky to explain their which means and practical strength. for instance, we all know little or no approximately pragmatic markers and prosody, their sociolinguistic use (how they're regarding the speaker's social category, age, or gender) or their distribution throughout textual content varieties (informal dialog, dialogue, and broadcast program).

This publication surveys pragmatic markers in a corpus of spoken English, targeting the features played by way of the markers in numerous kinds of textual content. Karen Aijmer explores the syntactic, semantic, pragmatic, and discourse points of the markers. by means of taking a broader standpoint at the markers, classifying them, describing their class-specific homes, and examining person markers, she assesses no matter if any generalizations might be made approximately their prosody.

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As pointed out in Chapter 1, the formal features of pragmatic markers have generally been neglected perhaps because there has been a tendency to consider pragmatic markers to be ‘a functional category’ rather than combinations of functions and form. Another reason for this omission may be that there is not a simple relationship between form and function. Formal features may be associated with the functions of pragmatic markers in partly systematic, partly idiosyncratic ways. Although it has generally been admitted that there are relations between form and function, we know for example very little about how prosodic features are related to the functions of pragmatic markers.

It marks the speaker’s involvement with the hearer, co-operation and interest in what is going on in the discourse. Well signals that the speaker has considered whether what has just been said is good or bad, whether the information in the preceding text is sufficient, whether it meets expectations before taking a stance by either agreeing or disagreeing with the previous speaker or by expressing an opinion on what has been said. A distinction can be made between examples where well expresses an attitude or modifies a previous assertion and where it reacts to a question.

This understanding of well is also close to Carlson’s definition of well as deliberative, which he defines as ‘weighing alternatives in terms of acceptability in order to arrive at a decision’ (1984: 86). 3 However the analyses proposed by Schourup or Carlson are characterised by meaning minimalism: well has a single core meaning from which new meanings can be derived. 6) with a ‘richer’ meaning theory making it possible to distinguish between core aspects (sub-senses, inferences, connotations, indexical meanings).

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