linguistik-online - MP
van der Wouden, Ton
Modal Particles in Dutch as a Second Language
Evidence from a Perception Experiment
This study examines the perception of modal particles in Dutch, contrasting native and non-native speakers. The term "modal particle" will be used as a cover term for a group of high-frequent words found in real-life discourse in languages such as German, Dutch and classical Greek, used to express meaning nuances in various areas like modality, evidentiality and aspect (cf. e. g. Weydt (1977) where comparable elements are called "Modalpartikeln" or "Abtönungspartikeln"; Schiffrin (1987) where we find the term "discourse markers", and Foolen (1996) who speaks of "pragmatic particles"). Whether or not modal particles constitute a proper subset of the class of adverbs (or of any other syntactic or semantic class of lexical items) is a question beyond the scope of this paper (cf. e. g. Henschel/Weydt 1989).