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date: 28 November 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Deictic expressions such as here–there, this–that, now–then, I–you make interpretable reference only by virtue of an indexical connection to some aspect of the things, people, places, and times that constitute the speech event. For instance, this refers by identifying some enumerable thing proximate to the speaker. Now indicates a temporal span that overlaps with the time of speaking. In what follows, we suggest that through a study of deixis in both its most basic and its elaborated forms it is possible to apprehend the interactional foundations of all reference which, like deixis, involves directing the attention of others.

Keywords: deixis, reference, attention, semantic and grammatical structure, interaction

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