chapter  3
28 Pages

Person as a system

This chapter is concerned with the semantics of person in the functioning of language. The seemingly simple and uncontroversial concept of person could be genuinely more complex than is generally taken for granted. The systemic description of the data as regards person, even when as apparent and straightforward as for English personal pronouns, involves a series of questions (see Fawcett, 1988). However, Fawcett (1988) does not deal with every aspect of English personal pronouns (e.g. reflexivity) and decides to exclude the category of case from the description, let alone account for the bigger picture of the manifestation of person in language. Therefore, this chapter will at first try to provide an account of the bigger picture related to person and then of how it fits into the semantic choice networking.