LINGUIST List 11.1446

Fri Jun 30 2000

Books: Discourse/Semantics/Computational Ling

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  1. Mariana Damova, Discourse/Semantics/Computational: Tense & Aspect in Discourse, M. Damova

Message 1: Discourse/Semantics/Computational: Tense & Aspect in Discourse, M. Damova

Date: Tue, 27 Jun 2000 19:20:35 -0400
From: Mariana Damova <>
Subject: Discourse/Semantics/Computational: Tense & Aspect in Discourse, M. Damova


A Study of the Interaction between Aspect, Discourse Relations and
 Temporal Reference within Discourse Representation Theory 
 with Special Attention to Bulgarian

Mariana Damova

 ISBN 954-9908-01-1
 FDC Publishing Agency, Sofia
 November 1999

Intended readers:

Students and scholars with interests in general linguistics,
computational linguistics, computational and formal semantics,
discourse, Slavic languages, comparative linguistics.


This study is a PhD thesis from the Institute for Computational
Linguistics, University of Stuttgart, Germany. It deals with the
theoretical notion of aspect and the ways aspect is referred to in
languages with different structure and devices to convey aspectual
information. Aspect, along with tense and temporal expressions and
clauses, reveals information about the temporal structure of
texts. But it also has a part in shaping their rhetorical
structure. Evidence from French, English, German, Bulgarian are
studied, and it is shown that Bulgarian provides explicit language
means to describe the semantic effects of aspect which are partially
present in the three other discussed languages. The dynamic analysis
of tense and aspect pursues the methodological headlines of Discourse
Representation Theory ([KAMP,79,81;&al.,93]). A deeper look at
Bulgarian language phenomena provides arguments for a new way of
defining and formally representing the overall realm of aspect in a
uniform way. The introduced method is based on combining the lexical
semantic effects of the rich derivational mechanisms in Bulgarian with
the meaning of the aspect related specific Bulgarian morphological
category "wid". It results in elaborating a formal metalanguage, which
allows accounting for the discourse semantics and rhetoric effects of
aspect. In consequence the Bulgarian past tenses "aorist" and
"imperfect" are discussed. Their interpretation and semantic
representation are included into the developed formal
account. Finally, a semantic construction algorithm, which ensures the
explicit connection between syntactic structures and semantic
representations is presented. Thus, the thesis offers a global account
for treating Bulgarian aspect with respect to discourse relations and
temporal reference in texts. It claims that the developed theoretical
and formal apparatus is general enough to be valid and successfully
applicable across languages. It can be incorporated into computer
systems for processing of natural language texts.

For further information please contact: 

CP 1732, Succ H
Montreal, Quebec H3G 2N6
Price: 15,- US$; 20,-$CAN. 
Extra charge for shipping and handling at rates of 10,-CAN within 
North America and 15,-DM within Europe will be required.

About the author: 
Mariana Damova graduated in classical philology from Sofia State
University "Kliment of Ochrid", Sofia, Bulgaria 1988. In 1992 she
received a post-master's degree in multilingual engineering from the
University Sorbonne-13 in Paris, France and in 1998 a Ph.D. from the
University of Stuttgart, Stuttgart, Germany. Presently she is pursuing
research and teaching at the Computer Science Department of Concordia
University, Montreal, Canada.
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