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Book review: Louise Cummings (ed.), The Pragmatics Encyclopedia. Oxford: Routledge, 2010, xxi + 650 pp., £125.00 (hbk)

Book review: Louise Cummings (ed.), The Pragmatics Encyclopedia. Oxford: Routledge, 2010, xxi + 650 pp., £125.00 (hbk)


Book review Louise Cummings (ed.), The Pragmatics Encyclopedia. Oxford: Routledge, 2010, xxi + 650 pp., £125.00 (hbk) SAGE Publications, Inc. 201010.1177/1461445610376476 © The Author(s) The Author(s) Marianne Freie Universität, Berlin, Germany Encyclopedias are, by definition, a kind of text which aims to provide information about an area of knowledge. Though not necessarily exhaustive, a good encyclopedia should be broadly inclusive. This was Louise Cummings’s aim and it has been achieved. Cummings notes that the field of pragmatics has expanded well beyond its quiet begin- nings in philosophy to now being a multidisciplinary, multidimensional, vibrant field of study and research. The Pragmatics Encyclopedia covers ‘. . . core concepts and theories [. . .] in entries on implicature, deixis, presupposition, speech act theory and relevance theory. Important theoretical work at the interfaces of pragmatics and other language levels is discussed in entries on morphopragmatics, the semantics-pragmatics, syntax-pragmatics and prosody-pragmatics interfaces. (preface). Additionally attention is given to ‘. . . areas that have tended to exist in parallel to pragmatics’ (preface) such as experimental pragmatics. The scope of the entries is impressively wide and deep. There are, for example, brief entries on lesser-known issues like the pragmatics of animal communication
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