About the meaning and function of the discourse marker

Abstract: In this paper, the use of speech act theory, relevance theory and Grice's theory preliminary discussions and analysis of the semantic and discourse marker meaning, that discourse marker in the true value conditions on the semantic meaning or concept of significance, but has the significance of the program code, its meaning is implied, and the role of discourse marker mainly pragmatic, dynamic, human orientation in order to speak to express the speaker's attitude, manner, evaluation, between discourse units internal semantic relationships clarity of speech a language mechanisms or instruments.

Keywords: discourse marker, semantic meaning of language with meaning, the concept of significance, procedures coded meaning

CLC: H030 Document code: A Article ID :1009-8135 (2010) 01-0103-04

I. Introduction

Discourse marker (discourse markers) is very common linguistic phenomenon of verbal communication, foreign conversation analysis and pragmatic in recent years has become a new research topic in studies .20 1970s, this new discipline with the pragmatics the emergence of the establishment and development, scholars began pragmatic discourse marker research but the study is basically coherent theoretical framework, involving only the discourse marker Cohesion and coherence of the discourse in the form of role, and use it as the starting point for study and discussion. Blakemore the first from a cognitive one language with the point of departure, the study of discourse markers, its theoretical basis is proposed by Sperber & Wilson related theory (Relevance Theory), which opened up a discourse marker study of a new pathway. This paper the use of the Relevance Theory, the implication of the speech act theory and Grice, semantics and pragmatics of discourse markers with significance of preliminary.

Second, the concept of discourse marker, characteristics and type

Discourse markers language has so far not a more unified definition and relatively fixed term. Jucker & Ziv think, discourse markers alleged in the language does not affect the sentence true value, only expression of attitude or step significance of language ingredients. Risselada & Spooren "discourse markers The language can be defined as the natural language expression, its main role is to promote the hearer statement between the various factors in the communicative situation coherent relationship between the process of understanding Fraser believes that the meaning of the sentence can be divided into two parts: the proposition significance (propositional meaning) and non-propositional meaning. proposition meaning refers to "the speaker intend to cause attention to the world of the recipient state (a state of the world), the literal content of the sentences, non-propositional meaning caller implied communicative intent, is the symbolic significance that is discourse discourse super Pragmatic Meaning the discourse marker refers to those who make the discourse generated Pragmatic meaning, so that the caller accurate language in the form of the language information is passed to the recipient. Fraser is clear that, only words that connect two or more small sentence can be called a discourse marker discourse marker is named or highlight the semantic relationship between two discourse units in the same discourse, the two parts can be next to can also separate the words of the same person, and can also be a dialogue between the speaker and the hearer discourse marker can not create semantic relationship, because there is no discourse marker, such a semantic relationship actually exists, use words mark in order to allow the listener to accurately identify this semantic relationships such as:

b. The rent is reasonable; the location is perfect.

(2) The rent is reasonable. In addition / Besides, the location is perfect

(3) a.The rent is reasonable. Moreover / Furthermore, the location is perfect.

b. The rent is reasonable; moreover, furthermore, the location is perfect.

(4) The rent is reasonable, for, because thelocation is perfect.

(1) a (4) four expression proposition or conceptual sense, to convey the propositional content of the two units, however, to determine the relationship between the two propositions content on these express not the same as in (1) a, in the absence of discourse markers, the relationship between the two propositions more obscure conventional understanding, the two propositions point of a rented room on two separate aspects (rental and geography position. (2), besides the use of (or inaddition), prompted a parallel relationship between the two propositions, they introduced the proposition the previous proposition adds. (3) moreover (or furthermore also prompted the proposition introduced Proposition additions, but also implies an even more important to add, worth more attention to hearer. (4), for prompt its introduction of the proposition should be regarded as Prior to Proposition description of a reason, and vice versa, the previous proposition should be seen as some kind of conclusion, because reveals almost the same information, but prompted a stronger causal link, if there is no appropriate discourse markers language, obedient people it is difficult from the above multiple semantic relations correctly identify the speaker's desire to express the semantic relationships.

There are different classifications according to different perspectives and views of discourse marker Ran Yongping discourse marker is divided into eight types: (1) the topic markup language (Topic-related markers) or discourse connectives (discourse connectives), such as "I want to is, "Then again," and (2) the the discourses source markup language (evidentialmarkers), such as, "well-known", "the newspaper said," and so on, (3) reasoning markup language, such as "In a nutshell, shows that: (4) In other words Markup Language (reformulation markers, such as "In other words, put it this way, I mean" the way markup language (5) speech (manner-of-speaking markers), such as "I am afraid I may say so, in short, strictly speaking," (6) compared markup language, such as "But, but" (7) Evaluation markup language (self-assessmentmarkers), such as "my ' see, lucky ", (8) the verbal behavior markup language (locutionary performatives, such as" I tell you, you tell the truth ".

Third, semantic and pragmatic meaning of discourse markers

(Semantic meaning of a discourse marker

1. Procedural meaning and conceptual meaning

Sperber, and Wlison think that a discourse can encode two basic sense, from the perspective of cognitive significance into conceptual meaning (conceptual meaning), and the meaning of the program (proceduralmeaning). Discourse coding helps content sense characterization are "conceptual significance, because it is related to the true value explicit information and implicit meaning of the words to express all play a role, and improve expressly communicative behavior associated assumptions by increasing the relevance of discourse, When Discourse information encoding manipulate the constituent components of the discourse content meaning, belong to "the meaning of the program, because it has nothing to do with conventional truth condition for understanding the explicit information and implicitly significance to restrain and guide, so that procedure Hearers pay as small as possible to get the larger contextual effects. based on relevance theory, discourse marker is generally used as a procedural meaning encoded constraints limit the implied meaning of the discourse, to facilitate the success of the boot reasoning and communication. discourse interpretation process degree is a reasoning process, obedient and readers to the best interpretation of the associated discourse must be based on the program information in their assumptions that need to be considered to limit, and eventually achieve the purpose of understanding from conventional implicatures. Grice (conversational implicature) point that the use of these words because communicative to comply with a true, full, related criteria such Schiffrin represent a coherent theory (coherence theory) is analyzed from the perspective of discourse analysis, discourse marker discourse or language chapter is more coherent discourse unit linkages may exist at all levels unfolded, to discourse comprehension provides guidance. Blakemore within the framework of relevance theory, starting from the nature of the communication, that the use of the discourse marker is not a talker out of consideration for cooperation, but also different from a coherent theory, on the contrary, they are the caller restrict the results of context in order to make use of these mark them improve in the discourse understanding the role to the height of the human cognitive psychology, Stressing the discourse marker can be on the the obedient person's cognitive reasoning process constraints, leading the listener towards optimal relevance. Therefore, the discourse marker pass encoding procedural meaning, rather than the concept of significance.

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2. The dominant significance and implications of

Associated theory is that understanding discourse both need to obtain information: significant meaning (explicature and Hidden Meaning (implicature). Significant meaning express contextual assumptions (explicitly communicatedassumptions It includes not only the words of the proposition, also includes the proposition that in the speech act verb or propositional attitude verbs under the proposition, this proposition called senior obvious meaning (higher-levelexplicature) associated with the theory that the discourse marker encoded content is not explicit part of the communicative implication, by its very nature is Pragmatic and dynamic.

(Two words mark the pragmatic meaning

Pragmatic scientist Levinson pointed out that, in English, there is no doubt that the vast majority of languages, there are a lot of words and phrases marked some kind of relationship between a discourse preceding discourse, as in the beginning of the sentence but, therefore in conclusion, to the contrary, still, however, anyway, well, besides, actually, all in all, so, after all, people generally believe that these words contain at least the non-truth-conditional meaning ...... they often indicates where the The discourse is merely a response to the previous discourse, and continued "This fact has been related to their pragmatic functions and pragmatic utility of their use can not be separated socially main pragmatic awareness, in a different context conditions may exhibit a rich language with functions and pragmatic meaning, rather than grammatical function, the role of just a "marker" (signpost / marker function, does not constitute a discourse semantic or propositional meaning, but it has a rich Pragmatic significance of the effect and the language.

1. Implementation of the speech act

Grice believes that the meaning of the discourse marker generate regular session, and implementation of a high-level speech acts such speech acts in the basic proposition discourse comment, on the other hand, the implementation of a contrast verbal behavior: so, therefore implementation of speech acts reasoning, moreover speech acts to increase the information, Grice discourse marked by the implementation of the speech act is not discourse center speech act, they are attached to the center of the speech act. Bach agreed Grice discourse marker understood as a discourse non-central speech act (non central speech act point of view, he will mark the discourse called the discourse modifiers (utterance modifers), because they are not modified sentence but words. traditional speech act theory, although there is no discourse marker but has been involved in this linguistic phenomenon. speech act theory is the core of the language can be used to describe not only the objective reality, express ideas, transmit information, and can also be used to influence others to change the world, describing the social role to stimulate people's feelings. the discourse theory is most concerned about is the implication of the force (illocutionary force), and some language means is expressly implication, such as speech act verbs (performative verbs). discourse markers can be implemented to express the speaker's speech act or show that talk this proposition the attitude. pragmatic discourse marker function can speech acts. example:

(5) To tellthe truth, I wiU come back again nextweek.

(6) No doubt, Tom has passed the exam.

(5), (6) the sentence "tell you to say" and "There is no doubt that" the discourse proposition does not have an impact, but they are implemented separately with each speech act: "Tell you the truth," shows that the speaker is To return to the fact that no secret to announce next week, "There is no doubt that" not only shows that the speaker is no doubt the authenticity of the proposition, while also telling the hearer his / her words are credible.

Another example, in verbal communication, speaker and hearer efforts need to maintain harmonious interpersonal relationships, and try to do the polite courtesy is to stay to the other party or their own language means (including the use of discourse markers reached face. Brown and Levinson believes that many speech acts that may threaten the face. discourse marker use Brown and Levinson threat face (face-threatening acts) closely there is bound to play a similar role in verbal communication structure of language or words, such as fuzzy constraint language, indirect speech acts, discourse marker well is an implementation of speech acts, a role in easing language (mitigator) on interpersonal relationships, can play a regulating role of interpersonal rich Pragmatic meaning and language effects.

(7) A: We'll all miss Bill and Agatha, won'twe?

B1: Well, we 'll miss Bill.

B2: We 'll miss Bill.

(7) B2 contrary to the guidelines for the amount of the principle of cooperation, only one person certainly miss Bill Bi With Marker Well to answer questions, not to mention that they do not like Agatha This gives the other left face compared with B2, Bi makes it easier to accept, and B2 is even more blunt threat to each other face. Well detente and adjust the language in this play effect. speak in some context with the discourse marker Well deliberate violation some guidelines in the principles of cooperation, but in order to comply with certain politeness principle, both easier to accept their point of view, with the effect to reach the polite language.

(8) A: They must worry about you through Eddie, don'tthey, you Mum and Dad, when you 're doing all these jumps.

B: Er well they always come to aU the shows.

(9) A: Canl see them?

B: Um welll'm not allowed to do that.

(8) B expressed views different from A, and indirectly expressed the parents complain emotional enough concern. (9) A request been rejected by the B, they are a direct threat to the other's face, however, well use has greatly reduced the intensity of the threat. involving the use of the discourse marker well Communicative main face of the speaker or hearer Well the emergence of speech acts threaten the face of efforts to help reduce.

2. Highlights the potential semantic relations

The main role of the discourse marker is pragmatic, and they do not have a sense of the true value conditions, the proposition true where the discourse impact. They are carrying information about the speaker, the speaker's own subjective judgment. express a judgment of the speaker of the semantic relations between discourse units, the use of the discourse marker so the semantic relationships between the discourse unit more clarity. example:

(10) The film is over, so we might as well go directly to the party.

"The film is finished" and "Why do not we go directly to the party between itself there is an inference relations, which concluded on the basis of the former role of discourse marker so just this relationship clarified, so obedient accurately identified semantic relationships. Fraser pointed out that the discourse unit itself there is a semantic relationship between discourse marker is not redundant, because sometimes they could potentially variety of semantic relations , when the speaker it is necessary to use a discourse markup language, his / her intended performance of semantic relationship prominent show between units of discourse or discourse context of semantic relations between pragmatics role.

3. Express the speaker's evaluation

Discourse marker is a verbal communication speak a human-centered (speaker-oriented) or to speak human orientation. Discourse marker information contained in some of evaluation, to express the thoughts and attitudes of the speaker, to identify the speaker manner of speaking, the show the speaker said information degree of certainty or clear the source of the information, the language used utility and language with the meaning is very rich, such as:

(11) Zhang Daoheng Then all of a sudden oddly grinning, the eyes interesting looking at the front of the Dai exhaustive. "IMHO, in many ways, you also seem very naive, you need to get a real exercise., you should participate in 'Breaking and' perhaps I'll give you a quote best medicine.'' This man spoke eyes gaze from his face pushed to have been looking at the dark windows. "Of course, I do not have any reluctance you mean, but my invitation was sincere from my heart, I hope you can attend."

In the above example, "I am afraid I may say so and say from my heart" the two discourse marker is not triggered below its real role is limited to the back of the discourse. Discourse marker "IMHO" indicates that the the speaker's manner of speech, and it is behind the words of the hearer is likely to be negative. discourse markers "from my heart" strengthen the credibility of it behind the discourse. speaker expressed here both his attitude to the harm of the hearer, in order to successfully achieve their intentions.

IV Conclusion

From speech act theory, relevance theory and Grice's theory preliminary discussion and analysis the semantic pragmatic meaning of discourse markers, that discourse marker semantic meaning or concept meaning of truth conditions, but with the significance of the program code, and its significance implicit discourse marker pragmatic, dynamic, to speak human orientation, is to express the speaker to show a judge of the semantic relationships between discourse unit, is inherent in the discourse between units The semantic relationships clarity a language mechanism or means.

References:

Wang Yang, the language of discourse markers cognitive pragmatic interpretation [J]. Tianjin Foreign Studies University, 2005 (3).

Fraser, Bruce.Pragmatic Markers [J]. Pragmatics, 1996 (6) .167-190, 1625-1630.

Ran Yongping. Pragmatic functions of the discourse marker well [J]. Foreign Languages, 2003 (3) :58-64.

Schiffrin, Deborah.Discourse Markers [M]. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1987.

Long river. Romantic Paradise [M], Guangzhou: Flower City Publishing House, 1997.

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