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SPAGAD Lecture Series: Intonational and gestural signals act as sister pragmatic operations

Speaker Pilar Prieto
Affiliaton(s) ICREA-Universitat Pompeu Fabra
Date 19.11.2021
Time 16:00 o'clock
Link to SPAGAD Lecture Series

Kommentatorin:         Prof. Dr. Cornelia Ebert (Goethe-Universität Frankfurt/M.)

Link zum YouTube-Video des Vortrags

Even though intonation has been traditionally claimed to be an indicator of the epistemic commitments of the participants in a discourse, very few empirical investigations have addressed specific semantic hypotheses related to (a) the precise semantic contribution of intonation to utterance interpretation, and (b) how this semantic contribution can be encoded in a parallel fashion by other parts of grammar (including gesture) crosslinguistically. 

In this talk, the results of a set of empirical studies will be presented in order to assess the dependence and interplay between intonation and gestural signals in the marking pragmatic operations. Overall, the results of the studies presented will show how prosody and gesture work as sister systems in pragmatic marking. Following up on recent work in our lab (see Brown & Prieto 2021), I claim that prosodic information, together with discourse particle marking, as well as morphosyntactic and gestural information, work as strongly integrated systems across languages to encode a set of multidimensional meanings. Ultimately all this evidence shows the need to integrate the study of
intonational meaning with other parts of the grammar inside a more unified approach in comparative analyses of language.


Brown, L. - Prieto, P. (2021). “Gesture and prosody in multimodal communication”. In: M. Haugh, D. Kadar, & M. Terkourafi (Eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Sociopragmatics, 430- 453 Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


Link: https://hu-berlin.zoom.us/j/65658112731?pwd=dE5hQUNEMHd5NXFmSUtFNkoxeUJEdz09

To get access, please register with schmitt@leibniz-zas.de.