Through narrative planning towards the preverbal message

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This paper develops a model of narrative production which incorporates language-independent and language-specific principles of discourse planning, concentrating particularly on the differences in narrative planning between English and German speakers documented in a number of psycholinguistic studies (e.g. Carroll et al. 2008). For example, one of the most striking features of German narratives is a global preference for encoding the protagonist of the story as the grammatical subject of the sentence, which shapes the narrative structure at all levels, from selection of events for verbalization, to decisions related to foregrounding and backgrounding of information, to actual subject selection on a sentence by sentence basis. In this paper preferences of this kind are implemented as systems of hierarchically organized rules which are applied to a knowledge base encoded in the framework of Discourse Representation Theory to derive typical German and English narrative solutions.


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