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What is a deictic center?



A deictic center is a reference point in relation to which a deictic expression is to be interpreted.


The deictic center is most typically the present time, location, participant role, and so forth of the speaker.

Examples (English)
  • In the following example, the speaker, the actual location and the actual time of the utterance are, respectively, the deictic centers for the interpretation of I, here, and now:

  • I’m over here now.
  • Sources

    Fillmore 1975 83–85


    Denny 1978 73

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    Go to SIL home page This page is an extract from the LinguaLinks Library, Version 5.0 published on CD-ROM by SIL International, 2003. [Ordering information.]

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