Polyphony and verb forms


  • Jelena Rajić




polyphony, evidential use, hidden quotations, representation, metarepresentation


This paper examines some special uses of indicative and subjunctive verb forms in Spanish, which contemporary linguistics explains using the notions of polyphony, evidentials, echoic representation, quotatives, etc. These terms, even though they refer to different characteristics and belong to different theoretical frameworks, share one common feature: they all refer to diverse linguistic forms (discourse markers, linguistic negation, quotatives, echoic utterances, etc.) characterized by the presence and interaction of different voices or points of view in one discourse sequence. In this study we are interested in a description of quotative or polyphonic meanings expressed by specific verb forms and tenses, the imperfect and the conditional, and also by indicative forms in subordinate substantive clauses with a negative main verb and by subjunctive forms in subordinate concessive clauses. Our research focuses on the analysis of the linguistic conditions that make possible the evidential use of the conditional, the imperfect and the echoic (metarepresentative) interpretation of indicative and subjunctive forms in the above-mentioned contexts. The examples we discuss show that evidential and echoic interpretations are inferential meanings derived from the extralinguistic situation and the knowledge that speakers have of the world.


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Author Biography

Jelena Rajić

Jelena Rajić es licenciada en Lengua y literatura españolas por la Facultad de Filología de la Universidad de Belgrado. Se doctoró por la misma facultad en Lingüística hispánica con la tesis «El discurso reproducido en la narrativa
en la lengua española». Su campo de investigación son sintaxis, lingüística contrastiva, pragmática y análisis del discurso. Actualmente es profesora titular en la Cátedra de Estudios Ibéricos de la Facultad de Filología de la
Universidad de Belgrado, donde imparte clases de Morfología, Sintaxis y Pragmática y coordina los cursos de traducción. Es autora de la Gramática de la lengua española para serbiohablantes y de varios artículos científi cos sobre la pragmática y el análisis del discurso.



How to Cite

Rajić, J. (2012). Polyphony and verb forms. Verba Hispanica, 20(1), 295–305. https://doi.org/10.4312/vh.20.1.295-305