About Stylistic-Register Grammar
In modern Chinese, “buy and read a book” 「買和看了一本書」 is ungrammatical, whereas “purchase and conserve many classic ducuments ” 「購買和保存了一批經典文獻」is grammatical. The first example illustrates that “and” cannot be used to connect verbs; but the second one shows the opposite. This contradiction of grammaticality is a result of different stylistic-register grammars: the former is an example of colloquial informal Chinese; while the latter is an example of literary formal Chinese. One of the research tasks of JRCCLAL is to construct and develop a theoretical system of the fact that “different stylistic-registers are formed with different grammars”「語體不同，語法亦異」, and to explore relevant grammatical phenomena. “Stylistic-register grammar” here means “the most primitive linguistic devices that are generated in direct social communication among people, in which language is used to express or determine the relationship and social distance between each other”. Social distance among people can be described as “near/far” or “low/high”, which constitutes the binary feature in the stylistic-register grammar, reflected as the difference of “formal/ informal” and “elevated/plain” in human languages, and resulting in three types of stylistic-register grammars， namely， informal, formal and elevated grammars. The basic function of language is communication. Different grammars (including phonology, morphology and syntax) are activated according to different communication objects, locations, content and attitudes of the speaker, resulting in various styles and ways of speech, and even various styles of writing and genres, establishing different grammatical systems among different stylistic-register grammars. Stylistic-register grammar is a new research area of studying various grammatical devices generated by UG, activated by distance-adjustments in face-to-face communications.