Tag Questions in Conversation
A typology of their interactional and stance meanings
This monograph deals with variable tag questions. These are utterances with a variable interrogative tag, like It's peculiar writing, isn't it, and the semi-variable tag innit, such as Nice, innit. The aim is to provide a corpus-based, comprehensive semantic-pragmatic typology of British English tag questions. Compared to existing descriptions, the proposed typology is novel in three ways. Firstly, whereas almost all existing typologies are single-layered classifications, the functions of tag questions are categorized into two parallel dimensions of interpersonal meaning: the speech function and the stance layer. Secondly, semantic generalizations are proposed for clusters of grammatical, intonational and conversational properties. Thirdly, the bottom-up description is based on a sizeable amount of authentic, spontaneous conversations, which are analysed both qualitatively and quantitatively.
[Studies in Corpus Linguistics, 83] 2018. xviii, 250 pp.
Publishing status: Available
© John Benjamins
Table of Contents
List of abbreviations
Typographical conventions in the examples
Key to transcription conventions
Chapter 1. Introduction
Chapter 2. State of the art and aims of study
Chapter 3. Corpora, data and methodology
Chapter 4. TQ properties
Chapter 5. Speech functions
Chapter 6. Stance typology of TQs
Chapter 7. TQs across the three corpora
Chapter 8. Conclusions and prospects for future research
“Despite an abundance of previous studies on TQs, Kimps succeeds in taking a fresh approach, by considering a range of features and accounting systematically for correlations between formal and conversational properties and interaction/stance functions.”
Gisle Andersen, NHH Norwegian School of Economics
“Unique descriptive results regarding tag questions; the development of an original analytical framework; exemplary deployment of methods; and excellently written.”
Jonathan Culpeper, Lancaster University
“It develops a rich taxonomy of use and I am happy to note incorporates prosody. The author’s well motivated separation of Interactional function and stance is for me the most significant aspect of this study.”
Gerard O’Grady, Cardiff University
“This book delivers on one of the most important promises of corpus linguistics, which is that the use of corpora can not only give us data, but can furnish us with new opportunities. [...] The book is well-produced, well proofread, and well indexed, and we ought to give credit to both the author and the publisher for the nice array of charts and graphs in the book, many of which include color. [...] What exactly is going on with tag questions in English? How does corpus linguistics empower us to provide better analyses of such linguistic phenomena? This book provides worthwhile answers and points us in the direction of deeper understanding.”
Hanno T Beck, University at Buffalo, on Linguist List 30.229, (15 January 2019)
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Sebastian Hoffmann, Trier University, in Journal of Pragmatics 147: 100-102, 2019
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Cited by other publications
Kimps, Ditte, Kristin Davidse & Gerard O’Grady
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