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Title: A study in the referential functions of English noun phrases
Author: Thrane, Torben
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1977
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The present work attempts to establish a theory of reference from a linguistic - rather than philosophical - point of view. PART Is The Preliminaries (pp. lo-113) surveys various linguistic and philosophical problems associated with ref¬ erence; it argues against predicational analysis as a vi¬ able framework for dealing with reference; and it estab¬ lishes the field of referentiality as the domain divided between deixis (spatio-temporal location) and denotation (categorial location). PART II: The Theory (pp. 114-233) begins by drawing a fundamental distinction (based on Frege) between syntactico- semantic (SS) and referential-semantic (RS) analysis, and by setting up the notion "referential potential" as a property of linguistic items. The common — metaphysical — basis for the calculus of classes and the referential theory is demonstrated, and the formal framework developed. Four RS-categories are recognized, associated with "all", "kind" (i.e. genus), "some", and "one". These categories are considered to be the 'heads' in referential phrases, each one of which consists of one of the functional (deictic) categories and one lexical (denotative) category. The referential phrases are ordered hierarchically in a referential branch under which NP is generated. Two different serialization-types (appositive and delimitative) are considered referentially significant. A transformational component is introduced to account for serialization within the NP; three transformational pro¬ cesses are recognized. After a number of data from languages other than Eng¬ lish has been adduced in support of various aspects of the theory, PART IIIi The Application (pp. 234-413) be¬ gins by establishing the (closed) class of referential functives in English. These fall into four subclasses: quantifiers, E-classifiers, determinatives, and pronouns. These subclasses are established distributionally on the basis of the serialization-types they may enter. The remainder of PART III applies the theory to English NP's which contain a referential functive. Finally, a number of other areas are briefly mentioned for which RS-analysis is likely to prove insightful.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available