I thought pointing is rude: A dialogue-semantic analysis of pointing at the addressee

  • Jonathan Ginzburg
  • Andy Lücking

Abstract

A pilot corpus study on the use of pointing gestures in dialogue yielded 44 instances of pointing at the addressee. In none of these instances is the addressee the gesture’s referent, however. Rather, such discourse pointings are bound up with dialogue management: they control the addressee’s attention and her view of the status of these referents in the incrementally emergent context. We distinguish four classes of addressee pointings, descriptively glossed utterance anaphora, common ground, something’s coming to mind, and grab turn. We exemplify each class by means of empirical data and provide a dialogue semantics analysis. In this way, we extend the taxonomy of uses of pointings currently discussed in semantics and argue that the linguistic competence revealed by discourse pointings is inherently dialogical, adding evidence for extending the domain of grammar from well-formedness and truth conditions to include micro–level elements of conversational interaction.
Published
2021-09-16
How to Cite
Ginzburg, J., & Lücking, A. (2021). I thought pointing is rude: A dialogue-semantic analysis of pointing at the addressee. Proceedings of Sinn Und Bedeutung, 25, 276-291. https://doi.org/10.18148/sub/2021.v25i0.937