Zickenheiner, Frank (2022). Goals in Discourse - From Actions to Rhetorical Relations. PhD thesis, Universität zu Köln.

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This book provides a better understanding of rhetorical relations and their impact on the referent's abilities to serve as non-local antecedents for referential expressions. It argues that rhetorical relations rather relate speech acts than semantic denotations of sentences, which emphasizes the action theoretic character of communication and which makes it possible to describe and understand rhetorical relations for non-assertive speech acts. The arguments in this book are based on some cognitive and action theoretical assumptions which help to model a hearer's recognition of the speaker's communicative plans, which is believed to be the unrealized discourse structure. In particular, the common sense principle of inertia is used, which models the general assumption that agents believe that things in the world do not change if there is no reason for them to change. Based on this principle, it is possible to explain why acceptance moves in dialog are necessary for communication and, moreover, why by default, two speech acts are related by a support relation, i.e. by a relation where one speech act supports the goal of the speech act it is related to. Support relations are described as a further class of rhetorical relations that, roughly, correspond to subordinating relations but, in contrast to subordinating relations, have the advantage that it is possible to provide an intrinsic definition. Finally, it is shown how discourse structure as an impact on the prominence status of referents and speech acts, being roughly the ability of referents to serve as structural anchor for further communication.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD thesis)
Translated abstract:
CreatorsEmailORCIDORCID Put Code
Zickenheiner, Frankfrank.zickenheiner@web.deUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-642045
Date: 28 November 2022
Language: English
Faculty: Faculty of Arts and Humanities
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Fächergruppe 3: Deutsche Sprache und Literatur > Institut für Deutsche Sprache und Literatur I
Subjects: Language, Linguistics
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Discourse StructureEnglish
Rhetorical RelationsEnglish
Action TheoryEnglish
Discourse Representation TheoryUNSPECIFIED
Date of oral exam: 17 December 2020
NameAcademic Title
Jasinskaja, KatjaPD Dr.
Refereed: Yes
URI: http://kups.ub.uni-koeln.de/id/eprint/64204


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