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Word Meaning and SyntaxApproaches to the Interface$
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Stephen Wechsler

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199279883

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199279883.001.0001

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Argument alternations and cognates

Argument alternations and cognates

(p.56) 3 Argument alternations and cognates
Word Meaning and Syntax

Stephen Wechsler

Oxford University Press

This chapter surveys the argument-taking properties of verbs and other predicators. It begins with argument selection (the question of which participants are expressed as subject, object, and other grammatical functions), including description and analysis of subject–object asymmetry and various types of object omission and demotion (object pro-drop, antipassive, and conative alternations). Next we survey causative, anti-causative, inchoative, and result state alternations, and other direct versus oblique alternations. A section on unaccusativity looks at properties of unaccusatives including auxiliary selection in European languages. The relation between unaccusativity and split ergativity is discussed. The typology of motion and manner lexicalization is reviewed, with discussion of the tendency toward manner–result complementarity. This is followed by a look at category conversions between verb and noun.

Keywords:   argument selection, subject–object asymmetry, argument alternations, causative, anti-causative, inchoative, unaccusativity, split ergativity, manner–result complementarity

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