Dr Vittorio Tantucci

Lecturer in Chinese and Linguistics

Research Overview

My research combines synchronic and diachronic approaches in cognitive linguistics and pragmatics. I am interested in diachronic phenomena of language change, such as grammaticalization, (inter-)subjectification, chunking, entrenchment, constructionalization and semasiology. My research is also focused on the corpus-based analysis of spontanous speech events and speech acts, especially in connection with Theory of Mind and intersubjectivity. In my work, I address the latter as:

• a stage of the ontogenetic development of the child (viz. his/her first language acquisition)

• a cognitively triggered stage of diachronic reanalysis of a linguistic construction

• an online form of cognitive awareness which can be operationally/textually observed during adults’ speech events.

Many aspects of my research are centered on Mandarin Chinese and other Sinitic languages addressed from a typological, cognitive and (intercultural-)pragmatic point of view. The domains of enquiry of my publications are:

  • grammatical-semantic-pragmatic approaches to evidentiality, epistemic-modality, tense-aspect, factuality (or factivity)
  • cognitive and pragmatic approaches to presuppositions, common ground, assertions and speech act theories
  • intercultural and diachronic analysis of (im-)politeness and face-work theory
  • usage-based analysis of reference and deixis


My methodology is mainly characterized by qualitative and quantitative corpus-based/driven models of analysis, R-based machine-learning modeling and data-manipulation techinques, questionnaire-design, typological as well as intercultural-pragmatic comparison, both from a diachronic and a synchronic perspective.

Current Teaching:

At the moment I convene the following modules:

CHIN200 Chinese Linguistics

CHIN201 Chinese Linguistics

CHIN300 Chinese Linguistics and translation

LING490 Cognitive Approaches to English Grammar (MA module)