1887
Volume 19, Issue 2
  • ISSN 0172-8865
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9730
USD
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes

Abstract

In this paper, we examine one wh-construction in Singapore English, which signals a demand for justification, and show that there is a systematic correlation between its structural and pragmatic properties. We suggest that this wh-construction is based on the imperative, and inherits the structural properties associated with the relatively more polite version of the imperative. In Singapore English, this is the version that makes explicit mention of the second person subject, whereas in Standard English the use of you in the imperative decreases politeness. After a careful comparison of the pragmatics of the imperative in Standard English, Singapore English and Chinese, we conclude that the asymmetry between the why-construction in Standard English and in Singapore English can be accounted for by substrate influence from Chinese, from which the Singaporean construction has inherited its politeness constraints.
Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1075/eww.19.2.05als
1998-01-01
2019-12-11
Loading full text...

Full text loading...

References

http://instance.metastore.ingenta.com/content/journals/10.1075/eww.19.2.05als
Loading
  • Article Type: Research Article
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error