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The Indo-European Controversy: Facts and Fallacies in Historical Linguistics

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Academic Paper


Title: The pronominal psychological demonstrative in Scandinavian: Its syntax, semantics and pragmatics
Author: Janne Bondi Johannessen
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: University of Oslo
Linguistic Field: Pragmatics; Semantics; Syntax
Abstract: The paper describes and discusses a demonstrative that has received little attention in the literature. The demonstrative can be found in many of the Scandinavian languages and dialects, and seems to be most frequent and widespread in the mainland Scandinavian languages. It has the same phonological form as third-person singular pronouns, and can be used only with nouns and have human (or human-like) specific reference. From a deictic perspective, the demonstrative is interesting because its conditions of use are linked to what I call psychological distance. Syntactically, it is also interesting because it has different characteristics in the different languages; in Norwegian and Icelandic it can be argued to be part of the DP, while the empirical facts of Swedish and Danish suggest that the psychologically distal demonstrative is DP-external in these languages.

CUP AT LINGUIST

This article appears IN Nordic Journal of Linguistics Vol. 31, Issue 2, which you can READ on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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