Emergent patterns of predicative clauses in spoken Hebrew discourse: The ha'emet (hi) she- 'the truth (is) that' construction

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This study focuses on the Hebrew construction ha'emet (hi) she- 'the truth (is) that' in a corpus of informal audio and video conversation. Taking an interactional linguistics approach, I argue that the construction serves as a metalingual fragment constituting a projecting construction. Its employment is fixed and formulaic, it occurs at a moment of shift in the discourse and is used to project talk which does three kinds of social work: displaying the speaker's stance; setting the record straight regarding the speaker's personal world; and revealing delicate information. Each function emerges in a context-sensitive manner, revealing the relationship between the construction and its sequential position. Employment of the construction illustrates the ways grammar evolves from the interactions among conversational participants.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEmergent Syntax for Conversation. Clausal patterns and the organization of action
EditorsYael Maschler, Simona Pekarek Doehler, Jan Lindstrom, Leelo Keevallik
PublisherJohn Benjamins Publishing Company
Number of pages24
ISBN (Electronic)9789027261939
StatePublished - 2020

Publication series

NameStudies in Language and Social Interaction
ISSN (Print)1879-3983

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 John Benjamins Publishing Company


  • Hebrew
  • Predicative clause
  • Projecting construction
  • Routinization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language


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