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Title: A Pragmatic Survey of Hindi Imperatives
Authors: Sharma, Ghanshyam
Issue Date: 1999
Publisher: Padova, Editoriale Programma
Abstract: The paper deals with different types of Hindi imperatives and aims at providing a pragmatic framework that can account for various ways of expressing commands. Although the paper is a sort of descriptive survey of Hindi imperatives, it indirectly argues, in particular, that any formal semantic theory which intends to study the phenomenon will have to take into account many of those elements of meaning of non-declarative sentences which cannot be properly dealt with in any truth-conditional analysis. A truth-conditional analysis of imperatives remains incomplete in that it does not have the necessary tools to study all the elements of meaning of imperative utterances. While a declarative sentence can be studied giving a characterization in which a sentence S is said to be true if its truth-conditions are met, an imperative sentence, in pragmatic terms, has two directional fits: first, an imperative sentence S can be thought to be true if its command is carried out by the hearer, and secondly, an imperative sentence S can be thought to be true if the speaker really intends that the hearer carry out the action. Nevertheless, none of the cases is potentially truth-conditional. They tend to be non-truth-conditional in that they carry the speaker's various commands rather than some definite state of affairs to which truth-values can be attached. The difference in meanings of various types of Hindi imperatives has been studied here in the light of pragmatic theories of meaning that take into account the speaker's intended meaning in making an imperative utterance.
Appears in Collections:Annali di Ca' Foscari. Serie orientale

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