Discourse markers and coherence relations

Comparison across markers, languages and modalities

Authors

  • Maite Taboada Simon Fraser University
  • María de los Ángeles Gómez-González Universidade de Santiago de Compostela Spain

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.1558/lhs.v6i1-3.17

Keywords:

discourse analysis, discourse markers, languages, modalities

Abstract

We examine how one particular coherence relation, Concession, is marked across languages and modalities, through an extensive analysis of the Concession relation, examining the types of discourse markers used to signal it. The analysis is contrastive from three different angles: markers, languages, and modalities. We compare different markers within the same language (but, although, however, etc.), and two languages (English and Spanish). We aim to provide a contrastive methodology that can be applied to any language, given that it has as a starting point the abstract notion of coherence relations, which we believe are similar across languages. Finally, we compare two modalities: spoken and written language. In the analysis, we find that the contexts in which concessive relations are used are similar across languages, but that there are clear differences in the two modalities or genres. In the spoken genre, the most common function of concession is to correct misunderstandings and contrast situations. In the written genre, on the other hand, concession is most often used to qualify opinions.

Author Biographies

Maite Taboada, Simon Fraser University

Maite Taboada is Associate Professor of Linguistics at Simon Fraser University (Canada). She holds MA and PhD degrees from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (Spain), and an MSc in Computational Linguistics from Carnegie Mellon University. Maite works in the areas of discourse analysis, systemic functional linguistics and computational linguistics.

María de los Ángeles Gómez-González, Universidade de Santiago de Compostela Spain

María de los Ángeles Gómez González is Full Professor of English Language and Linguistics at the University of Santiago de Compostela. She is also the principal investigator of the research group SCIMITAR (http://www.usc.es/scimitar/) and has published articles in numerous scholarly journals such as Applied Linguistics, Discourse Studies, Language Sciences, Word, International Journal of Corpus Linguistics, Functions of Language, Interface, Southwest Journal of Linguistics, or Spanish in Context, as well as the following books: The Theme-Topic Interface: Evidence from English (John Benjamins, 2001), A New Architecture for Functional Grammar (Mouton de Gruyter, 2004), Studies in Functional Discourse Grammar (Peter de Lang, 2005), The Dynamics of Language Use: Functional and Contrastive Perspectives (Benjamins, 2005), Languages and Cultures in Contrast and Comparison (Benjamins, 2008a), and Current trends in Contrastive Linguistics: Functional and Cognitive Perspectives (Benjamins, 2008b). Personal website: http://www.usc.es/scimitar/mdlagg/index.html

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Published

2012-12-13

How to Cite

Taboada, M., & de los Ángeles Gómez-González, M. (2012). Discourse markers and coherence relations: Comparison across markers, languages and modalities. Linguistics and the Human Sciences, 6(1-3), 17–41. https://doi.org/10.1558/lhs.v6i1-3.17

Issue

Section

Discourse Markers