Dr Vittorio Tantucci

Senior Lecturer in Linguistics and Chinese Linguistics

Research Overview

My research is both theoretical and applied in nature. It uses Pragmatics and Cognitive Linguistics methods in various contexts and populations, including dialogic speech in Intercultural and Cross-cultural Communication, Language Change, Autism, First Language Acquisition, Dementia and so on.

My publications are focused on corpus-based and multifactorial analysis of naturalistic interaction occurring in context-specific settings of typologically different languages, such as Mandarin Chinese and other Sinitic languages, but also Germanic, Romance and other language families.

One of the areas of my research is the combination of diachronic, developmental and interactional analysis of Theory of Mind, Facework and Intersubjectivity, about which I published the book Language and Social Minds: The Semantics and Pragmatics of Intersubjectivity (Cambridge University Press, 2021).

I am interested in (Im)politeness research, with a focus on the proto-social notion of Reciprocity and how responsive behaviour regulates moral order and social identity in different cultures. This combines with other areas of Pragmatics as treated in my book Pragmatics: Theory and Methods (Oxford University Press, 2024).

Linguistic imitation is also central in my research: the way people sound like one another or re-use one another’s expressions is a key indicator of engagement, empathy and creativity. This phenomenon is called ‘Resonance’ and is discussed in detail in my book Dialogic Interaction and Resonance: The Pragmatics and the Grammar of Creativity (Cambridge University Press: 2024).

I am also interested in diachronic phenomena of language change, such as grammaticalization, (inter-)subjectification, entrenchment, constructionalization and semasiology, as discussed in my recently edited book Different Slants of Grammaticalization (Benjamins: 2023).

Much of my work is also devoted to Aspect, Evidentiality, Modality and Pragmatics Markers.

My methodology is characterised by qualitative and quantitative corpus-based/driven models of analysis, R-based machine-learning modelling and data-manipulation techniques, questionnaire design, typological and intercultural-pragmatic comparison.

  • DisTex - Discourse and Text Research Group
  • Research Group in Cognitive Linguistics
  • UCREL - University Centre for Computer Corpus Research on Language