par De Brabanter, Philippe
Référence Deutsche Gesellschaft für Sprachwissenschaft (DGfS) Meeting (42: March 4-6, 2020: Hamburg, Germany)
Publication Non publié, 2020-03-04
Communication à un colloque
Résumé : Theories of quotation can be classified in terms of the role they ascribe to marks of quotation, understood as dedicated morphemes. ‘Type-1’ theories, which dominate the field, take marks to be necessary for the generation of quotation. Such theories are endorsed explicitly in Davidson (1979) or Cappelen & Lepore (1997, 2005), but also implicitly adopted by Maier (2014). ‘Type-2’ theories do grant a specific semantics to marks of quotation, but take them to be mere ‘disambiguators’ (Clark & Gerrig 1990, Recanati 2001, De Brabanter 2017).Adopting a type-1 theory has implications that are sometimes overlooked. One of them can be formulated as a disjunction: either (i) written and spoken quotation lend themselves to distinct accounts, or (ii) there must be a spoken correlate of quotation marks, one that is equally necessary to their generation. Since I take an adequate theory of quotation to be valid across mediums (written, spoken, signed), (i) should be rejected. How about (ii)?Real-life examples abound of pure quotation and direct discourse that is unmarked in writing. There is also a good case that Recanati’s ‘hybrid’ cases can also occur unmarked. With respect to spoken contexts, the few relevant studies have concluded against prosodic markers being equivalent to quotation marks (Klewitz & Couper-Kuhlen 1999: 473). This doesn’t mean that prosody is never used to signal a quotation. But (i) diverse prosodic cues are used, (ii) not systematically, and (iii) they fulfil several functions (Günthner 1999: 691).The evidence just alluded to has two possible consequences: either type-1 theories are false, or quotation marks must at least exist as null elements in syntax, not being realised ‘at the surface’. I know of no attempt to formulate such an account. One variant of type-2 theories, which takes quotation to be a ‘demonstration’ (Clark & Gerrig 1990; Recanati 2001; De Brabanter 2017), fits the empirical bill, while displaying a range of additional advantages. First, it regards quotation as an iconic communicative act (as opposed to ordinary conventional linguistic acts), which explains why quotations can be produced in the absence of dedicated morphemes. Second, it does justice to the ‘pictoriality’ of quotation, widely acknowledged but still largely disregarded in theory-building. Third, it treats quotation as pertaining to a wider phenomenon that interacts with language use: demonstrations. Like all demonstrations, quotations are nonserious and selective (Clark & Gerrig 1990). I will show that this is true even in the least favourable case of pure quotations