Questions

Questions : Formal, Functional and Interactional Perspectives

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Description

The view that questions are 'requests for missing information' is too simple when language use is considered. Formally, utterances are questions when they are syntactically marked as such, or by prosodic marking. Functionally, questions request that certain information is made available in the next conversational turn. But functional and formal questionhood are independent: what is formally a question can be functionally something else, for instance, a statement, a complaint or a request. Conversely, what is functionally a question is often expressed as a statement. Also, verbal signals such as eye-gaze, head-nods or even practical actions can serve information-seeking functions that are very similar to the function of linguistic questions. With original cross-cultural and multidisciplinary contributions from linguists, anthropologists, psychologists and conversation analysts, this book asks what questions do and how a question can shape the answer it evokes.show more

Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • 76 b/w illus.
  • 1139847643
  • 9781139847643

Table of contents

1. Introduction: questions are what they do Jan P. de Ruiter; Part I. Questions: Interplay between Form and Function: 2. Interrogative intimations: on a possible social economics of interrogatives Stephen C. Levinson; 3. Structures and questions in decision-making dialogues Jerry R. Hobbs; 4. Mobilising response in interaction: a compositional view of questions Tanya Stivers and Frederico Rossano; 5. Wordless questions, wordless answers Herbert H. Clark; Part II. The Structure and Prosody of Questions: 6. Formal features of questions Jerry Sadock; 7. Some truths and untruths about final intonation in conversational questions Elizabeth Couper-Kuhlen; 8. Shaping the intonation of WH-questions: information structure and beyond Aoju Chen; Part III. Questions and Stance: 9. Beyond answers: questions and children's learning Stanka A. Fitneva; 10. Navigating epistemic landscapes: acquiescence, agency and resistance in responses to polar questions John Heritage and Geoffrey Raymond; 11. Epistemic dimensions of polar questions: sentence-final particles in comparative perspective N. J. Enfield, Penelope Brown and Jan P. de Ruiter; 12. Multi-functionality of interrogatives: asking reasons for and wondering about an action as overdone Mia Halonen and Marja-Leena Sorjonen.show more

About Jan P. de Ruiter

Jan P. de Ruiter is Professor of Psycholinguistics in the Faculty of Linguistics and Literary Studies at Bielefeld University, Germany.show more