Declarative Request

1. General

1.1. Label

  1. Person Declarative Request

1.2. Reasons for construction status

conventional interpretation of the construction as a particular speech act

1.3. Examples

"Now you move to the right"

"First you take the bar with five holes"

2. Language Information


2.2. Language


2.3. Variety

occurs in dialogical, task-oriented communication among speakers of equal status and solidary orientation

2.4. Speech Community

(to be filled out if the construction is used in a particular speech community)

2.5. Language Contact

(to be filled out if the construction influenced by constructions from another languages)

2.6. Time Period

(time period of construction)

2.7. Stage of Acquisition

(comments on age and circumstances of the acquisition)

3. Form

3.1. Syntax


Although the construction belongs into a paradigm with other declarative constructions, it has very different pragmatic properties.

3.1.2. Internal Valency

n/a Constituency

The construction consists of a subject constituent filled by a second person pronoun (singular or plural), a verb phrase, and often a time adverb refering to the present.

3.1.3. External Category

The category of the construction is a sentence. Structural Position

occurs in contexts in which the speaker's role to instruct the addressee is given (for instance due to a preceding question)

3.2. Morphology


the construction follows 'the general rules of English'

3.2.2. Internal Morphological Properties of Elements

The verb in the construction is restricted to the present tense, the subject pronoun has to be second person.

3.2.3. External Morphological Properties of Construction


4. Meaning

4.1. Semantics


The meaning of the construction is the description of future (suggested, preferred) actions of the addressee.

4.1.2. Internal Frame

The frame evoked is the request scenario, as well as the metonymic inference that the result of a request may stand for the request itself. Event

depending on the verb in the construction Participants

Addressee = requested-of and agent of event requested Speaker = requester event described = event requested Truth-Conditional Information

Although the event is reported in the present indicative active, it describes a (possibly) future event. Negation

no peculiarities regarding negation; the scope of the negation refers to the event described, not to the speech act meaning. Scope


4.1.3. External Semantic Class

sentence Relation to Construction-External Semantic Elements

n/a Truth Relations

(information on the truthconditional relationships of the construction) Semantic Presuppositions

(semantic presupposition) Semantic Entailments

(semantic entailments)

4.2. Pragmatics


The construction implies an instruction or request.

4.2.2. Internal

The event described has to be preferable from the speaker's or the hearer's perspective.

4.2.3. External Indexical Properties Deixis

The agent of the events described is always the addressee. Intertextuality

n/a Interpersonal Function

By presenting the result of the request/instruction, the request becomes polite. Speaker attitude

The speaker has to understand the situation as solidary and reciprocal. Speech Act Function

The illocutionary force of the construction is to make a request or to give an instruction. Rhetorical Function

The request is not presented as such. Style

n/a Pragmatic Presuppositions / Implicature

The construction functions as a request under the shared assumption that the speaker's task is to issue requests.

4.3. Discourse Properties

4.3.1. Internal Turn Constructional Status

The construction constitutes a TCU. Within-Turn Position


4.3.2.External Sequential Context

The context has to ensure the speaker's role to produce a request. Position in Text- and Dialogue-Structure

n/a Sequence Type


4.4. Information Structure

4.4.1. Internal Topic - Comment

n/a Focus


4.4.2. External Signaled Information Status

n/a Information Status Requirements


4.5. Data

4.5.1. Introspection

4.5.2. Authentic data Source data properties

The construction is very common in task-oriented dialogical corpora, especially route descriptions, coordinated actions and instructional scenarios. Methods of Analysis

The construction is very common; the data that I have been using are task-oriented data elicited in projects like Verbmobil, SFB/TR8 Spatial Cognition, human/robot interaction data etc.

4.6. Literature

Fischer, K. (forthcoming), in Fischer, K. and Glynn, D. (eds.): Quantitative Methods in Cognitive Semantics. Mouton de Gryuter.

5. Relations to other constructions

5.1. Subtypes

5.1.1. Diachronic

(relations to subtypes of the construction through time)

5.1.2. Synchronic

(relations to subtypes of the construction)

5.2. Supertypes

5.2.1. Diachronic

(relations to more general constructions through time)

5.2.2. Synchronic

(relations to more general constructions)

5.3. Paradigmatic Relations

Formally, the construction forms a paradigm with other declarative sentence constructions, functionally it is part of a paradigm of different constructions expressing grammatical mood.

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