Structural Ambiguity in English is a major new scholarly work that provides an innovative and accessible linguistic description of those features of the language that can be exploited to generate structural ambiguities.
Most ambiguity scholarship is concerned with disambiguation—the process of making what is ambiguous clear. This book takes the opposite approach as it focuses on describing the features in the English language that may contribute towards the creation of structural ambiguities, which form the core of some of the best word-plays found in advertising, comedy and marketing.
Oaks utilizes a systematic and comprehensive inventory approach that identifies individual elements in the language and their distinctive behaviors that can be manipulated in the deliberate creation of structural ambiguities. In doing so he also provides authentic examples to illustrate the concepts he presents.
This book will appeal to researchers and academics interested in the structure of the English language, usage, pragmatics, communication, natural language processing, editing, and humor studies as well as those in marketing, advertising, or humor writing.