[Lingtyp] Term for “non-pronominal anaphora"

Volker Gast volker.gast at uni-jena.de
Fri May 21 14:42:32 UTC 2021

Not sure if there's a word for it, but there's a recent paper on 
"Reference without anaphora: On agency through grammar" by C.W. Raymond, 
R. Clift and J. Heritage in Linguistics, see


The paper deals with English only (it's Free Access). The authors simply 
use the attribute 'non-anaphoric (reference)' for the relevant uses.

We generally assume that accessible referents are referred to using 
anaphora, but sometimes we prefer to use a "full" form. The authors 
argue that this has to do with agency in the sense of interactional 
linguistics. For instance, we may prefer a proper name over an anaphora 
when we talk about someone we know very well, such as our kids or 

Granny's friend: "James's a little devil, hehe."
James' granny: "James is a little bugger, isn't he."

The authors argue that speakers may claim epistemic or deontic authority 
with such usages. (The example above is taken from the paper but 
simplified, see p. 740).

I'm not a specialist of Conversation Analysis, but I find this very 
intriguing (and it is my impression that we tend to redundantly use 
proper names when talking about our partners, for instance; that might 
be a matter of affection). This case is obviously different from the one 
mentioned by Ian, which is also very intriguing.


On 21.05.21 16:05, Juergen Bohnemeyer wrote:
> Dear Ian — This would fall under ’nominal’ anaphora, I believe. Same as in the following example:
> (1) Sally stopped in her tracks. The woman had forgotten where she was headed.
> I believe I’ve also come across the term ‘lexical’ anaphora. — HTH — Juergen
>> On May 21, 2021, at 2:00 AM, JOO, Ian [Student] <ian.joo at connect.polyu.hk> wrote:
>> Dear all,
>> is there a term for “non-pronominal anaphora”, i. e. using personal names or titles for anaphoric reference?
>> Example:
>> Hyeng-kwa hyeng-uy chinkwu
>> older.brother-COM older.brother-GEN friend
>> `Older brother and his (lit. older brother’s) friend’ (Korean)
>> I tried to search it in Google, but since I don’t know what this phenomenon is called, I don’t know what to search for.
>> I would appreciate your help.
>> Regards,
>> ian
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