Applying the Givenness Hierarchy Framework: Methodological Issues
Nancy Hedberg: Invited to give the opening talk at the International Workshop on Information Structure of Austronesian Languages, Dec. 13-15, 2013, at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies.
Before leaving for Tokyo, Nancy explained this talk, "will concentrate on methodological issues pertaining to assessing cognitive constraints on the use of different determiner and pronominal forms in languages. for example, does a representation of the referent need to be already in the addressee’s focus of attention (as is the case with English ‘it’), available in long-term memory (like determiner ‘that’ phrases), inferable from conceptual material expressed in the noun phrase (like determiner ‘the’ phrases), or does the expression merely need to be conceptually understandable (like determiner ‘a’ phrases)? English, Japanese, Mandarin, Arabic, and Salish examples will be used as illustrations, and some preliminary speculations about the reference systems of Austronesian languages such as Tagalog will be advanced."