Handbook of Japanese Semantics and Pragmatics
Ed. by Jacobsen, Wesley M. / Takubo, Yukinori
Aims and Scope
The volume on Semantics and Pragmatics presents a collection of studies on linguistic meaning in Japanese, either as conventionally encoded in linguistic form (the field of semantics) or as generated by the interaction of form
with context (the field of pragmatics), representing a range of ideas and approaches that are currently most influentialin these fields. The studies are organized around a model that has long currency in traditional Japanese grammar, whereby the linguistic clause consists of a multiply nested structure centered in a propositional core of objective meaning around which forms are deployed that express progressively more subjective meaning as one moves away from the core toward the periphery of the clause.
The volume seeks to achieve a balance in highlighting both insights that semantic and pragmatic theory has to offer to the study of Japanese as a particular language and, conversely, contributions that Japanese has to make to semantic and pragmatic theory in areas of meaning that are either uniquely encoded, or encoded to a higher degree of specificity, in Japanese by comparison to other languages, such as conditional forms, forms expressing varying types of speaker modality, and social deixis.