LINGUIST List 28.676

Fri Feb 03 2017

Books: The Story of Zero: Givón

Editor for this issue: Michael Czerniakowski <mikelinguistlist.org>


Date: 02-Feb-2017
From: Karin Plijnaar <karin.plijnaarbenjamins.nl>
Subject: The Story of Zero: Givón
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Title: The Story of Zero
Published: 2017
Publisher: John Benjamins
                http://www.benjamins.com/

Book URL: https://benjamins.com/catalog/z.204

Author: T. Givón
Electronic: ISBN: 9789027266460 Pages: Price: U.S. $ 149.00
Electronic: ISBN: 9789027266460 Pages: Price: U.K. £ 83.00
Electronic: ISBN: 9789027266460 Pages: Price: Europe EURO 99.00
Hardback: ISBN: 9789027212399 Pages: Price: U.S. $ 149.00
Hardback: ISBN: 9789027212399 Pages: Price: U.K. £ 83.00
Hardback: ISBN: 9789027212399 Pages: Price: Europe EURO 104.94
Abstract:

The zero coding of referents or other clausal constituents is one of the most natural, communicatively and cognitively-transparent grammatical devices in human language. Together with its functional equivalent, obligatory pronominal agreement, zero is both extremely widespread cross-linguistically and highly frequent in natural text. In the domain of reference, zero represents, somewhat paradoxically, either anaphorically-governed high continuity or cataphorically-governed low topicality. And whether in conjoined/chained or syntactically-subordinate clauses, zero is extremely well-governed, at a level approaching 100% in natural text. The naturalness, cross-language ubiquity and well-governedness of zero have been largely obscured by an approach that, for 30-odd years, has considered it a typological exotica, the so-called "pro-drop" associated with a dubious "non-configurational" language type. The main aim of this book is to reaffirm the naturalness, universality and well-governedness of zero by studying it from four closely related perspectives: (i) cognitive and communicative function; (ii) natural-text distribution; (iii) cross-language typological distribution; and (iv) the diachronic rise of referent coding devices. The latter is particularly central to our understanding the functional interplay between zero anaphora, pronominal agreement and related referent-coding devices.

Linguistic Field(s): Historical Linguistics
                            Linguistic Theories
                            Semantics
                            Syntax
                            Typology

Written In: English (eng)

See this book announcement on our website:
http://linguistlist.org/pubs/books/get-book.cfm?BookID=112034


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