Date of Award

2012

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Linguistics

First Advisor

Regina Blass

Abstract

The following study is a description and analysis of six discourse markers in Tunisian Arabic. In it I will attempt to determine the syntactic and pragmatic roles of each marker, describing its function in discourse. The final analysis will be based on the pragmatic model of relevance theory.

I have based my study on thirty-two (32) texts in Tunisian Arabic, looking at frequently-occurring discourse markers in these texts and analyzing them based on their discourse roles in terms of local cohesion and pragmatic inference.

The conclusions of this study focus on the conceptual and procedural content of each discourse marker. I have attempted to identify the syntactic and pragmatic role of all six markers, looking at their argumentative functions in discourse. The result is a unified pragmatic function for each discourse marker.

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