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Lodz Papers in Pragmatics

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Editor-in-Chief: Chilton, Paul / Kopytowska, Monika

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The Semantic-Pragmatic Analysis of Persian Modal Verbs Based on Papafragou's Model

Jalal Rahimian / Zohreh Vahedi
Published Online: 2010-06-30 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/v10016-010-0009-7

The Semantic-Pragmatic Analysis of Persian Modal Verbs Based on Papafragou's Model

This paper aims at analyzing the semantics and pragmatics of Persian modal verbs based on Papafragou's (1998, 2000) relevance-theoretic model. Persian modals are defined in terms of logical relations and propositional domains. According to the findings of the research, two of the three modals, namely, šodan and tavân express the logical relation of compatibility with respect to different propositional domains: the three forms mišavad, mišod and mišode are unspecified with respect to their propositional domains and take them directly from the context, whereas betavân and bešavad accept the desirability domain. Mitavân also expresses compatibility in relation to the propositions in the factual domain. However, bˇyad is the only modal that encodes the logical relation of entailment and is unspecified with respect to the type of propositional domain it accepts.

Keywords: modal verbs; lexical semantics; pragmatics; Persian; relevance; metarepresentation

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About the article


Published Online: 2010-06-30

Published in Print: 2010-01-01


Citation Information: Lodz Papers in Pragmatics, Volume 6, Issue 1, Pages 67–116, ISSN (Online) 1898-4436, ISSN (Print) 1895-6106, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/v10016-010-0009-7.

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