Project

Back to overview

VTS: Verbal tenses and subjectivity: an empirical cognitive approach

English title VTS: Verbal tenses and subjectivity: an empirical cognitive approach
Applicant Puskas Nerima Genoveva
Number 170008
Funding scheme Project funding (Div. I-III)
Research institution Département de linguistique Faculté des Lettres Université de Genève
Institution of higher education University of Geneva - GE
Main discipline Other languages and literature
Start/End 01.01.2017 - 31.07.2021
Approved amount 349'040.00
Show all

All Disciplines (2)

Discipline
Other languages and literature
Romance languages and literature

Keywords (9)

français; subjectivité ; linguistique de corpus; roumain; temps; signification conceptuelle; pragmatique cognitive; pragmatique expérimentale; signification procédurale

Lay Summary (French)

Lead
VTS (Verbal tenses and subjectivity) vise à étudier le rôle joué par les temps verbaux dans la subjectivité, définie comme l’expression du point de vue du locuteur ou d’un autre point de perspective. Deux langues romanes, le français et le roumain, seront étudiées dans une perspective contrastive et empirique basée sur des corpus de traduction.
Lay summary

Objectifs

La première question de recherche porte sur le contenu pragmatique des temps verbaux en roumain, afin de trouver des points communs et des points de divergence permettant de tirer des conclusions plus larges sur le traitement cognitif de la référence temporelle, notamment sur la signification conceptuelle et procédurale et temps verbaux.

La deuxième question de recherche est de déterminer le statut de la subjectivité dans la communication verbale. Trois hypothèses sont généralement formulées : (1) la subjectivité est une information encodée linguistiquement, par des indices linguistiques comme les temps verbaux, l’aspect grammatical, les connecteurs pragmatiques ou encore les pronoms personnels ; (2) que la subjectivité serait une information purement pragmatique, dépendante du contexte et des connaissances générales sur le monde, partagées par les interlocuteurs ; (3) la subjectivité serait un phénomène d’interface entre ce qui est encodé dans la langue et l’usage que les locuteurs en font. Nous chercherons à valider l’hypothèse (3).

Les résultats visés sont doubles : (i) développer un modèle global de la référence temporelle et de la subjectivité en français validé empiriquement ; (ii) formuler un modèle de la référence temporelle en roumain, avec une insistance sur les temps verbaux et leurs usages subjectifs.

Contexte scientifique et sociétal

Le projet VTS vise à étendre nos connaissances à une langue moins étudiée dans le cadre de la pragmatique cognitive, et à décrire les types d’informations linguistiques et pragmatiques utilisables dans les domaines du traitement automatique du langage, de la traduction automatique et de l’enseignement des langues.

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 29.09.2016

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Publications

Publication
Le temps dans les traductions français-mandarin et mandarin-français : convergence ou divergence ?
SunJuan, GrisotCristina (2019), Le temps dans les traductions français-mandarin et mandarin-français : convergence ou divergence ?, in Nouveaux Cahiers de Linguistique française , 33, 11-44.
Les domaines linguistiques de la subjectivité du locuteur : étude empirique avec données de corpus
Grisot Cristina (2019), Les domaines linguistiques de la subjectivité du locuteur : étude empirique avec données de corpus, in TRANEL, 71, 19-43.
Mais où la subjectivité se cache-t-elle donc ? Une esquisse de réponse pragmatique
MoeschlerJacques (2019), Mais où la subjectivité se cache-t-elle donc ? Une esquisse de réponse pragmatique, in Nouveaux cahiers de linguistique française, 33, 101-118.
Subjectivité et temps verbaux: l’exemple du présent historique
MoeschlerJacques (2019), Subjectivité et temps verbaux: l’exemple du présent historique, in Centrella Maria, Altmanova Jana (ed.), T. Pironti, Naples, 303-322.
Tense, Grammatical Aspect and Subjectivity: An Experimental Study Using Inter-Annotator Agreement Rates and Corpus-Based Data
Grisot Cristina (2018), Tense, Grammatical Aspect and Subjectivity: An Experimental Study Using Inter-Annotator Agreement Rates and Corpus-Based Data, in Corpus Pragmatics, 2(1), 27-55.
A quantitative approach to conceptual, procedural and pragmatic meaning: evidence from inter-annotator agreement
GrisotCristina (2017), A quantitative approach to conceptual, procedural and pragmatic meaning: evidence from inter-annotator agreement, in Journal of Pragmatics, 111, 245-262.
Expressing temporal reference in Mandarin: a quantitative study using translation corpora.
SunJuan, GrisotCristina, Expressing temporal reference in Mandarin: a quantitative study using translation corpora., in Corpus Pragmatics.

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
Ted Sanders, Dep. of Linguistics, U. of Utrecht Netherlands (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
Larisa Avram, Dep. of English, U. de Bucarest Romania (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
Roxana Barlea, Unité de Roumain, Lettres, Unige Switzerland (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
First workshop of Xprag.ch Talk given at a conference The perspectival usages of verbal tenses. An experimental study 08.11.2019 University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland Grisot Cristina;
Xprag.it International Conference Talk given at a conference Is 'car' more objective after all?An experimental investigation and corpus-based analysis of French causal connectives 'car' and 'parce que'. 16.09.2019 University of Cagliary, Italy Grisot Cristina;
ICAME 2019 Talk given at a conference Translating verbal tenses between tensed and tenseless languages: a contrastive study of multilingual corpora (English, French and Mandarin Chinese). 04.06.2019 University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland Grisot Cristina;
VariaForMea doctoral school Individual talk VTS project: Verbal Tenses and Subjectivity: an empirical cognitive approach 14.05.2019 University of Naples L'Orientale, Italy Grisot Cristina;
Research Seminar Individual talk Comprehending speaker’s subjectivity: between propositional and non-propositional effects 07.05.2019 University of Brighton, Great Britain and Northern Ireland Grisot Cristina;
Intercultural Pragmatics Talk given at a conference How usage influences processing: the example of the French causal connectives “parce que” and “car”. 15.06.2018 University of Nicosia, Cyprus Grisot Cristina;
Chronos 13 Talk given at a conference Expressing temporal reference in Mandarin Chinese compared to French: a translation corpus study. 14.06.2018 University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland Grisot Cristina;
Intercultural Pragmatics Talk given at a conference The identification of subjectivity in naturally occurring data: evidence in favour of a global treatment. 08.06.2018 University of Nicosia, Cyprus Grisot Cristina;


Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
146093 LogPrag: Sémantique et pragmatique des mots logiques (négation et connecteurs logiques) 01.07.2014 Project funding (Div. I-III)

Abstract

This research project aims at investigating the pragmatics of verbal tenses and their relation to subjectivity in two languages: French and Romanian. In the cognitive pragmatics approach of language, the meaning of temporal markers such as verbal tenses, grammatical aspect and temporal adverbials is determined during the interpretation process under the combined pressure of the linguistic context, the general world knowledge mutually manifest to the participants at the communicative act and pragmatic cognitive principles, all guiding the inference toward the most relevant interpretation, which corresponds to the meaning intended by the speaker (Relevance Theory, RT, Sperber & Wilson 1986; Wilson & Sperber 2004). The question that arises given this framework of language comprehension is the place occupied by subjectivity in the interpretation process of a discourse in general, and of verbal tenses in particular. Does it belong to the linguistic context (in other words, is it encoded at the lexical and/or grammatical levels of a language), is it a purely pragmatic phenomenon or is it a phenomenon situated at the semantics-pragmatics interface (in other words, the result of an inferential process triggered by linguistic elements). The current state of the research is largely unbalanced between these two Romance languages both regarding the verbal tense system and subjectivity. The research will build on the rich state of the art regarding the pragmatics of verbal tenses in French (Moeschler et al. 1998, 2012; Moeschler 1998, 2000a, 2000b, 2015; Saussure 2003, 2011; among others) and regarding subjectivity with application to French but not only (Benveniste 1966; Banfield 1982; Fleischman 1990, 1995; Vuillaume 1990; Tahara 2000, 2004; Reboul 1992, 2000; Schlenker 2004; Moeschler 2014) and it will be carried on two levels. At the first level, we aim at proposing a fine-grained and comprehensive model of the relations between verbal tenses and subjectivity in French. At the second level, we aim at developing a cognitive pragmatic model of verbal tenses in Romanian, with a focus on verbal tenses that are more likely to have subjective usages. Hence, the main output of VTS will be an empirically (corpus-based and experimental) and fine-grained theoretical cognitive pragmatic model of temporal markers and subjectivity in two Romance languages. The research will be carried out by a unified team with complementary competences: the applicant, specialist in the pragmatics of temporal markers and connectives among others and native speaker of French, a post-doc, native speaker of Romanian, mastering French and English, and specialist in theoretical and experimental pragmatics and corpus linguistics, and a candoc, native speaker of Romanian with a solid knowledge of pragmatics. The research team will be located at the Department of Linguistics from University of Geneva, which has the material and human resources necessary to successfully carry out the research presented in this project. This project will provide an answer to questions regarding the status of subjectivity, its role for the processing of temporal markers and the nature of the semantics-pragmatics interface. Besides the fundamental contribution of this project to a less investigated language in a cognitive pragmatic framework, it also aims at proposing a model that is applicable to several fields such as translation studies, Natural Language Processing (NLP), statistical machine translation (SMT) and language teaching (Romanian L1-French L2 and Romanian L2).
-