ERIC Number: ED192581
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980
Reference Count: 0
VP Anaphor Choice in Discourse.
Kaplan, Jeffrey P.
Five types of Verb Phrase (VP) anaphors which appear to exist in free variation actually have specific grammatical, semantic, and rhetorical functions which account for the existence of some to the exclusion of others in certain syntactic environments. The five anaphors are: "do so,""do it," Verb Phrase Deletion (VPD), VPD with "too," and so-inversion. "Do so" and "do it" are the only true VP pro-forms. Certain grammatical restrictions on VPD with "too" and so-inversion that do not hold for the other three forms indicate that VPD with "too" and so-inversion are positional variants of each other. In natural speech, VPD with "too" and so-inversion are used only when subjects are compared; the others, elsewhere. Thus, where there was apparent free-variation, only more restricted forms occurred in a given environment. VPD with "too" and so-inversion are also divided along distributional and functional lines. "Too" usually occurs with one-word subjects, presents a marked, "new-old" information sequence, and an unmarked word order parallel to its preceding sentence. The function is to contrast subjects. "So" can occur with multiple subjects and produces a marked word order by subject-auxiliary inversion, thus highlighting information. Both syntactic structure and information sequencing act together, producing different rhetorical effects. (PJM)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Linguistics Symposium (9th, Milwaukee, WI, March 7-8, 1980).