Demonstratives in Singapore Malay : expression of stance through the use of Itu and Ini
Date of Issue2016-03-08
School of Humanities and Social Sciences
Demonstratives are a basic aspect of language and thought of to be a feature that is available in all languages (Dixon, 2003; Diessel, 1999). This study examines the use of demonstratives in Singapore Malay and whether demonstratives play any part in the expression of stance of the speaker. Making use of the video recording of natural conversation as well as data from the Singapore Malay Corpus, this study investigates the different conditions of use of demonstratives in a conversation and which conditions would encode an expression of stance. This is the first study of expression of stance via demonstratives in Singapore Malay and it also provides a grammar of Singapore Malay demonstratives, adapted to suit the local functions based on Indonesian reference grammar. The findings of this study show that expression of stance is more prevalent in certain positions and functions of use of the Malay demonstratives. Stance is more commonly encoded in turn final positions and in the use of multiple demonstratives. In the case of multiple demonstratives, one of the demonstratives is likely to carry out the tracking or pointing function, making the other demonstrative available to express other information such as stance.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University