This paper analyzes referential forms that identify the Ehime Maru and the Greeneville, the two vessels involved in the February 9, 2001, collision off the coast of Hawaii. Analysis of 256 articles reporting the collision obtained from the Mainichi Shinbun newspaper internet site results in referential preferences for Ehime maru 'the Ehime Maru' and gensen 'nuclear submarine'. I argue that different levels of elaboration and specificity observed in these choices are motivated, in part, by the reporter's emotive perspective, based on proximal insider versus distal outsider positioning. Previous studies (including syntactic, discourse, and pragmatic accounts) on referential strategies, including the research area of anaphora, fail to fully explain the phenomenon under investigation. Through interpretive and quantitative approaches, I emphasize that a satisfactory account of referential forms cannot be reached unless one understands how the writer's emotivity plays a part in choosing referential forms.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Language and Linguistics
- Linguistics and Language