Becker, Martin ORCID: 0000-0002-6750-2633 and Egetenmeyer, Jakob ORCID: 0000-0003-2394-9545 (2018). A prominence-based account of temporal discourse structure. Lingua, 214. pp. 28-58.

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In this article, we develop an account of temporal discourse structure that is composed of three different levels and based on the notion of prominence. The levels of temporal structuring in discourse are as follows: (i) the level of the linear and hierarchical temporal structure, which is constituted by time points and time spans as well as their interrelations, (ii) the level of perspective and perspective taking, and (iii) the level of foregrounding and backgrounding and text segmentation into story lines. Although these levels have already been identified by the research literature, they have neither been explicated in a systematic way while taking prominence into consideration nor brought together in a complete descriptive account. The unifying ingredient of our account is the principle of prominence, according to which the elements of a set of equals compete as to their prominence status, with one of them standing out with respect to the others at a certain point of the unfolding discourse. We show the crucial role of prominence in the structuring of discourse on each of the three levels. Our prominence-based account highlights the hierarchical structuring of discourse. This allows us to consider all important features of temporal discourse structure in one integrated account: tense choice, aspect, adverbial expressions and connectors, discourse relations and episode structure.

Item Type: Journal Article
CreatorsEmailORCIDORCID Put Code
URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-377760
DOI: 10.1016/j.lingua.2018.08.002
Journal or Publication Title: Lingua
Volume: 214
Page Range: pp. 28-58
Date: 2018
Language: English
Faculty: Faculty of Arts and Humanities
Divisions: Collaborative Research Centers > CRC 1252: Prominence in Language > TP C02
Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Fächergruppe 5: Moderne Sprachen und Kulturen > Romanisches Seminar
Subjects: Language, Linguistics
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Temporal discourse structure; Prominence; TenseUNSPECIFIED
Funders: DFG
Projects: SFB 1252 Prominence in Language, Project-ID 281511265
Refereed: Yes


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