We theoretically analyze superradiant emission of light from a cold atomic gas, when mechanical effects of photon-atom interactions are considered. The atoms are confined within a standing-wave resonator and an atomic metastable dipolar transition couples to a cavity mode. The atomic dipole is incoherently pumped in the parameter regime that would correspond to stationary superradiance in the absence of inhomogeneous broadening. Starting from the master equation for cavity field and atomic degrees of freedom we derive a mean-field model that allows us to determine a threshold temperature, above which thermal fluctuations suppress superradiant emission. We then analyze the dynamics of superradiant emission when the motion is described by a mean-field model. In the semiclassical regime and below the threshold temperature we observe that the emitted light can be either coherent or chaotic, depending on the incoherent pump rate. We then analyze superradiant emission from an ideal Bose gas at zero temperature when the superradiant decay rate is on the order of the recoil frequency ?R. We show that the quantized exchange of mechanical energy between the atoms and the field gives rise to a threshold, c, below which superradiant emission is damped down to zero. When > c superradiant emission is accompanied by the formation of matter-wave gratings diffracting the emitted photons. The stability of these gratings depends on the incoherent pump rate w with respect to a second threshold value wc. For w > wc the gratings are stable and the system achieves stationary superradiance. Below this threshold the coupled dynamics becomes chaotic.We characterize the dynamics across these two thresholds and show that the three phases we predict (incoherent, coherent, chaotic) can be revealed via the coherence properties of the light at the cavity output.