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Semantics and Pragmatics of Preposing (Hardcover) (Gregory L. Ward)
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First published in 1988, this book examines the aspects of pragmatic competence involving the class of preposing constructions in English. By limiting the scope of investigation to particular grammatical categories, the author argues previous studies have failed to capture significant pragmatic generalisations. The author asserts what distinguishes one preposing type from another are the semantic and pragmatic properties of the referent of that constituent. After a review of the past literature on preposing, the book goes on to present a pragmatic theory in which two discourse functions of preposing are proposed. It then provides a functional taxonomy of the various preposing types which the theory is designed to account for. One type of preposing, Topicalization, and two of its subtypes, Proposition Affirmation and Ironic Preposing, are discussed in detail in the subsequent chapters before the book concludes with a summary along with directions for future research.