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  • 1.
    Axelsson, Karin
    University of Skövde, School of Humanities and Informatics.
    A cross-linguistic study of grammatically-dependent question tags Data and theoretical implications2011In: Studies in Language, ISSN 0378-4177, E-ISSN 1569-9978, Vol. 35, no 4, p. 793-851Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article proposes a new categorization of confirmation-seeking question tags, based on how the use of such tags is restricted in relation to the preceding clause, the anchor. The focus is on a category labelled grammatically-dependent question tags (GDQTs). Earlier research has claimed that almost only English has such question tags, but this article presents and compares data on GDQTs from more than ten languages, and suggests a hierarchy for features of grammatical dependence in question tags: polarity < tense < number/person < (semantic) gender (possibly also < verb substitution). The GDQT structures vary in different ways: all GDQT languages have negative GDQTs, but not all have positive GDQTs; verb substitution is not always applied and constant polarity instead of reversed polarity is also found.

  • 2.
    Axelsson, Karin
    University of Skövde, School of Health and Education. University of Skövde, Health and Education.
    Canonical tag questions in contemporary British English2018In: Corpus approaches to contemporary British speech: Sociolinguistic studies of the Spoken BNC2014 / [ed] Vaclav Brezina, Robbie Love, Karin Aijmer, New York: Routledge, 2018, p. 96-119Chapter in book (Refereed)
  • 3.
    Axelsson, Karin
    University of Skövde, School of Health and Education. University of Skövde, Health and Education.
    Confirmation-demanding tag questions in fiction dialogue2014In: Subjectivity and epistemicity: Corpus, discourse, and literary approaches to stance / [ed] Dylan Glynn & Mette Sjölin, Lund: Lund University , 2014, p. 165-185Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper deals with tag questions to which an answer is demanded by a speaker who is certain about the truth of the proposition but who wants to hear the answer uttered by the addressee. Similar tag questions have previously been described based on data from courtrooms (e.g. Biscetti 2006), where tag questions are typically used by powerful speakers. However, data from the British National Corpus shows that confirmation-demanding tag questions may also be used outside institutional settings and in situations with various power relationships. Most of these examples are from fiction dialogue, where conflicts and confrontations are often depicted. In courtrooms, there is always an audience; however, in fiction dialogue, most confirmation-demanding questions in the data are found in private conversations. Confirmation-demanding tag questions seldom seem to be captured in conversational data, apart from in cases where the speaker wants the answer to be heard by a third party; it is therefore suggested that private confrontations might be underrepresented in conversational data. This paper also discusses functional categorizations of tag questions in general and argues that the unit of analysis should be the whole tag question, i.e. the anchor and the tag taken together, and not just the tag.

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