TASK 3: Summary of Yule’s chapter 4
As we have studied, in communication, speakers assume that listeners understand some information without being saying. According to this information, we can distinguish two different aspects of it: presupposition and entailment. The first one is what speakers assume to be known by the listeners; while the second is what logically follows from what is said in the statement. It is that entailments are in sentences, while the speakers have presuppositions. Presuppositions are usually seen as a relationship between two propositions, and an interesting aspect of it is that they will remain constant even when a statement is negated. In relation with presuppositions, there are some linguistic forms (words, phrases and structures), which are called “indicators of potential presupposition”, which can only become actual presuppositions in contexts with speakers. There are different types of presuppositions: existential (which is present in possessive constructions and in definite noun phrases), factive (speaker’s use of a particular expression is taken to presuppose the truth of the information given after it), lexical (speaker’s use of certain expressions is taken to presuppose another, unstated, concept), structural (certain sentence structures presuppose that part of the structure is already assume to be true. Speakers use it to treat information as presupposed in order to be accepted as true by the listener), non-factive (is that presupposition assumed not to be true according to the presence of some verbs such as dream, imagine, etc.), counterfactual (it is interpreted with a non-factive presupposition. What is presupposed is not only not true, but is the contrary to facts). According to the existence of those non-factive presuppositions, there is a problem for the analysis of statements with complex structures, which is known as “the projection problem”.
Haridian Machado González
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