Article (Scientific journals)
On the use of sì? (‘yes?’) as invariant follow-up in Italian: A historical corpus-based account of pragmatic language change
Viola, Lorella
2022In Journal of Historical Pragmatics
Peer reviewed
 

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Keywords :
discourse markers; corpus linguistics; media-induced language change; English in contact with Italian
Abstract :
[en] Follow-ups are elliptical interrogative forms typically constituting an utterance in their own right. They are used to signal attention to the interlocutor, to encourage them to continue or as a reply to a call. This paper investigates the invariant follow-up sì? (‘yes?’) in Italian and it argues that it represents a case of pragmatic language change. To this end, it investigates the diachronic distribution, collocation and contexts of usage of sì? in a variety of language sources in relation to plausible, equivalent expressions (i.e., dimmi and dica [‘tell me’]). The analysis will show that since its earliest record of use in films in 1960, the frequency of occurrence of this form has dramatically increased to the point that, today, it is the preferred device. The study will also provide solid evidence of positive correlations between the use of yes? in English language audio-visual products and the use of sì? in scripted and real-use Italian, strongly suggesting that the marker would in fact be a case of pragmatic borrowing from English.
Research center :
- Luxembourg Centre for Contemporary and Digital History (C2DH) > Digital History & Historiography (DHI)
Disciplines :
Languages & linguistics
Author, co-author :
Viola, Lorella ;  University of Luxembourg > Luxembourg Centre for Contemporary and Digital History (C2DH) > DHARPA
External co-authors :
no
Language :
English
Title :
On the use of sì? (‘yes?’) as invariant follow-up in Italian: A historical corpus-based account of pragmatic language change
Publication date :
29 November 2022
Journal title :
Journal of Historical Pragmatics
ISSN :
1569-9854
Publisher :
John Benjamins Publishing Company, Netherlands
Peer reviewed :
Peer reviewed
FnR Project :
FNR13307816 - Digital History Advanced Research Projects Accelerator, 2019 (01/10/2019-30/09/2024) - Sean Takats
Name of the research project :
13307816
Funders :
FNR - Fonds National de la Recherche [LU]
Available on ORBilu :
since 20 December 2022

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