Table of Contents

This volume represents a timely collective review and assessment of what it is we do when we do English historical pragmatics or historical discourse analysis. The context for the volume is a critical assessment of the assumptions and practices defining the body of research conducted on the history of the English language from the perspective of historical pragmatics, broadly construed. The aim of the volume is to engage with matters of approach and method from different perspectives; accordingly, the contributions offer insights into earlier communicative practices, registers, and linguistic functions as gleaned from historical discourse. The essays are grouped according to their orientations within the scope of the study of language and meaning in historical texts, both literary and non-literary. The structure of the volume thus represents a critical convergence of traditions of reading texts and analyzing discourse and this in turn exposes key questions about the methods and the outcomes of such readings or analyses. The volume contributes to the growing maturity of historical pragmatic research approaches as it exemplifies and extends the range of approaches and methods that dominate the research enterprise. Contributors are prominent international scholars in the fields of linguistics, literature, and philology: Dawn Archer, Birte Bös, Laurel Brinton, Gabriella Del Lungo Camiciotti, James Fitzmaurice, Susan Fitzmaurice, Monika Fludernik, Andreas Jucker, Thomas Kohnen, Ursula Lenker, Lynne Magnusson, and Irma Taavitsainen.