Constructions: A Construction Grammar Approach to Argument by Adele E. Goldberg

By Adele E. Goldberg

Drawing on paintings in linguistics, language acquisition, and machine technology, Adele E. Goldberg proposes that grammatical structures play a significant position within the relation among the shape and that means of easy sentences. She demonstrates that the syntactic styles linked to uncomplicated sentences are imbued with meaning—that the structures themselves hold that means independently of the phrases in a sentence.Goldberg offers a complete account of the relation among verbs and buildings, delivering how one can relate verb and constructional that means, and to trap kinfolk between buildings and generalizations over structures. Prototypes, body semantics, and metaphor are proven to play the most important roles. additionally, Goldberg offers particular analyses of a number of buildings, together with the ditransitive and the resultative buildings, revealing systematic semantic generalizations.Through a comparability with different present techniques to argument constitution phenomena, this e-book narrows the distance among generative and cognitive theories of language.

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32 Chapter Tw o since m orphological polysemy has been shown to be the norm in study after study (W ittgenstein 1953, A ustin 1940; B olinger 1968; Rosch 1973; Rosch et al. 1976; Fillmore 1976, 1982; Lakoff 1977, 1987; Haiman 1978; Brugman 1981, 1988; Lindner 1981: Sweetser 1990; Emanatian 1990). That is, since constructions are treated as the same basic data type as morphem es, that they should have polysem ous senses like m orphem es is expected. It is worth d is­ cussing a particular exam ple o f such constructional polysemy.

That is, Pinker notes that the sem antic features that are used to predict overt syntactic structure (via linking rules) are the same types o f semantic features that have The Interaction Detw een Verbs a n d Constructions 29 been shown to be associated with closed-class items, for instance m otion, cau­ sation, contact, and change o f state (Talmy 1978, 1983, 1985a; Bybee 1985). On a constructional account Pinker’s observation is predicted. W hat needs to be recognized is that what Pinker takes to be the “ syntactically relevant” aspects o f verbal m eaning are aspects o f constructional m eaning.

In point o f fact, the verb alone often cannot be used to de­ term ine w hether a given construction is acceptable. C onsider the follow ing ex ­ amples: (30) a. Sam carefully broke the eggs into the bowl. b. *Sam unintentionally broke the eggs onto the floor, (cf. 1) (31) a. This room was slept in by G eorge W ashington. *This room was slept in by Mary. (Rice 1987b) 22 Chapter O n e (32) a. Joe cleared Sam a place on the floor. b. *Joe cleared Sam the floor. (Langacker 1991) H olding the verb constant, the (a)-sentences are better than the corresponding (b)-sentences.

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