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Studies on English Modality

In Honour of Frank Palmer


Anastasios Tsangalidis and Roberta Facchinetti

Inspired by Frank Palmer’s work, this book addresses a set of specific topics pertaining to the description of modality in English and places them in a broader context. A number of more general theoretical and typological matters are also raised, which bear upon the theory of syntax, semantics and pragmatics and their interfaces. The methodology adopted is mostly functional-typological, though some reference is made to various theoretical frameworks, ranging from cognitive linguistics to parametric variation. Modal meanings are seen to extend beyond particular lexical and grammatical exponents, through sentential semantics and into actual contexts of use. At the same time, the study of modality seems to challenge commonly held views on the relationship between different levels of linguistic analysis. Other languages discussed include Brazilian Portuguese, Classical and Modern Greek and Spanish.
Contents: Anastasios Tsangalidis/Roberta Facchinetti: Preface – Juana I. Marín-Arrese: Effective vs. Epistemic Stance, and Subjectivity/Intersubjectivity in Political Discourse. A Case Study – Roberta Facchinetti: Subjectivity, (Non-)subjectivity and Intersubjectivity in English Modality – Anna Wärnsby: On Controllability as a Contextual Variable – Leo Francis Hoye: Modality in Discourse: The Pragmatics of Epistemic Modality – Marta Degani/Elisabetta Adami/Anna Belladelli: The Use of Modal Verbs in Interpersonal Contexts: From Semantics to Pragmatics – Heloisa Maria Moreira Lima-Salles: Para/for-infinitives in Brazilian Portuguese and English: Similarities and Contrasts in the Grammatical Encoding of Modality – Lotte Hogeweg: What’s So Unreal about the Past? Past Tense and Counterfactuals – Jo Willmott: Modality of English Conditional Sentences: The Evidence from Ancient Greek – Juan Rafael Zamorano-Mansilla/Marta Carretero: The Expression of Deduction Referring to Past Time within the Verbal Group: An English-Spanish Contrastive Analysis – Ferdinand de Haan: On the Status of ‘Epistemic’ Must – Ilse Depraetere: Some Observations on (Factual) Could + Perfect Infinitive – Evangelia Manika: Modal Verbs in Modern Greek and English: What’s Conceptualization Got to Do with Typology? – Philippe Bourdin: On the Role of Context in Interpreting Want as a Volitional or Deontic Verb – Daniël Van Olmen/Tanja Mortelsmans: Movement Futures in English and Dutch. A Contrastive Analysis of Be Going To and Gaan.