SYNTACTIC DIMENSIONS OF ATTENTION: FROM COMMUNICATIVE SYNTAX TO COGNITIVE STUDIES
Institute of Linguistics of Russian Academy of Sciences
The paper shows that cognitive syntactic studies play an important role in the linguistic research of attention. Cognitive linguistics has revealed links between focus shifts in the language, universal principles of visual perception and accessibility of the referent to the speaker, and it has also offered criteria of saliency for syntactic elements and roles. The author argues that the trends discovered by cognitive researchers are probabilistic, rather than absolute, because (de)focusing is largely influenced by on-line discourse activities and the speaker’s intentions.
attention; cognitive syntax; figure; ground; saliency criteria; (de)focusing