Deontic Modality ( Concept )

      |_ Abstract
            |_ Linguistic Property
                  |_ Morphosyntactic Property
                        |_ Modality Property
                              |_ Deontic Modality


Deontic modality is concerned with the necessity or possibility of acts performed by morally responsible agents and is thus associated with the social functions of permission and obligation. Deontic modality focuses on the notions of obligation and permission. It is found in directives that grant permission (‘you may go now’) or impose obligations (‘eat your vegetables!’), as well as in statements that report deontic conditions. Deontic modality fails to distinguish subcategories that are expressed inflectionally from lexical or periphrastic expressions of obligation or permission. Deontic modality as traditionally understood excludes certain semantically related notions such as ability and desire that have linguistic expression similar to that of permission and obligation. [Bybee and Fleischman 1995: 4-5]

Usage Notes



User Submitted Issues