chapter 5 Clausal self-repetition and pre-nominal demonstratives in Japanese and English animation narratives

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In this study, I investigate the functions and motivations for using clausal self-repetition and pre-nominal demonstratives in Japanese and English animation narratives. Clausal self-repetition was nine times more frequent in the Japanese narratives (where it occurred sentence internally and across sentence boundaries) than in the English narratives (where it only occurred across sentence boundaries). In both languages the syntactic gap it created between the preceding and repeating clauses functioned to make the preceding clause prominent, and also connected the event of the repeating clause to the following events. The analysis of pre-nominal demonstratives showed that the Japanese data had ten times as many uses of <i>sono</i> N &#8216;that N (neutral)&#8217; (all definite), compared to kono N &#8216;this N (proximal).&#8217; In contrast, the English data had twenty times more uses of <i>this N</i> (60% indefinite <i>this N</i>, and 40% definite <i>this N</i>) than <i>that N</i>. While indefinite <i>this N</i> was used to introduce the protagonists in the opening scene, Japanese used bare nouns (without pre-nominal demonstratives) in this context. While English narrators used indefinite <i>this N</i> to mark important referents and indefinite <i>a N</i> to mark less important ones, Japanese narrators used bare nouns (without pre-nominal demonstratives) for important referents and <i>sono</i> N &#8216;that N&#8217; to mark less important referents. Results of this quantitative comparison shed light on how Japanese and English narrators verbalize knowledge obtained from a nonverbal source.


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