Volume 3, Issue 2
  • ISSN 2213-8706
  • E-ISSN: 2213-8714
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This paper investigates the elasticity of the pragmatic particle in Mandarin Chinese, based on TV discussion data. It provides refreshing theoretic explanations of : the elasticity manifests through fluidity and stretchability of ’s meanings and functions, and its strategic use. has the general meaning of ‘a change of tone in an utterance’, which can trigger three pragmatic meanings (and functions) in context: mitigating (most frequent), boosting (least frequent) and soothing. These three meanings stretch upwards (boosting), downwards (mitigating) or sidewise (soothing) to serve the needs of communication. is sentence-type and text-type specific; the cluster shows the overlapping characteristics of the embedded declarative and interrogative forms.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): ba; Chinese; elastic language; modal words; particles; TV discussions
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