Sentence types

Aikhenvald, Alexandra Y. (2016) Sentence types. In: Nuyts, Jan, and Van Der Auwera, Johan, (eds.) The Oxford Handbook of Modality and Mood. Oxford Handbooks in Linguistics . Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK, pp. 141-165.

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“Declarative,” “interrogative,” and “imperative” are grammatical labels, while “statement,” “command,” and “question” describe type of speech act. The major sentence types correspond to these types, and are found in every language. There are also minor, less well-described types, such as exclamatives. Boundaries between sentence types are not water-tight. A command can be phrased using a statement, or as a question, with a difference in illocutionary force. A question may imply a statement rather than seeking information or pronounced with command intonation, and then be understood as a plea, a request, or an order. The versatility of sentence types is often rooted in cultural conventions and strategies of “saving face.” Speech acts reflect numerous communicative tasks, and can be mapped onto the sentence types in a specific way. The number of sentence types in a given language is finite, while the number of potential communicative tasks can be open-ended.

Item ID: 43814
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
ISBN: 978-0-19-959143-5
Keywords: language, sentence, declarative, imperative, interrogative, exclamative, intonation, speech act, sentence types
Date Deposited: 07 Apr 2017 02:43
FoR Codes: 47 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 4704 Linguistics > 470409 Linguistic structures (incl. phonology, morphology and syntax) @ 100%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970120 Expanding Knowledge in Language, Communication and Culture @ 100%
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