The Restriction on Predicative Codas in Existential There-Clauses. Theoretical and Empirical Perspectives

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Dokumentart: MasterThesis
Date: 2016-05-27
Language: English
Faculty: 5 Philosophische Fakultät
5 Philosophische Fakultät
Department: Anglistik, Amerikanistik
DDC Classifikation: 420 - English and Old English
Keywords: Linguistik , Empirie , Philologie , Syntax
Other Keywords:
Predicate Restriction
Existential Sentence
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This thesis investigates the so-called Predicate Restriction (PR) in English existential sentences. The general consensus in the literature is that only stage-level predicates (i.e. predicates denoting temporary properties, like 'sick') can appear in the coda of an existential sentence, while individual-level predicates (i.e. predicates that denote permanent properties, like 'tall') are excluded. After a discussion of the various theoretical approaches to the PR (syntactic, semantic, as well as pragmatic), this thesis pursues two empirical studies, using both corpus data from the BNC and a judgment study. Both studies confirm the theoretical preference for SLP (in a general sense), but also show that the distinction between predicates should not be reduced to a binary SLP–ILP choice. Predicates should rather be analysed in a more fine-grained system with multiple factors, as done in Jäger (2001).

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