Events, Phrases, and Questions

Paperback | January 9, 2011

byRobert Truswell

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This book examines some knotty problems in natural language. These typically involve questions where the sense or the grammaticality of an utterance teeters on or over the edge of acceptability among native speakers. The phenomena in question have been examined within syntactic theory for overtwo decades with no wholly satisfactory outcome. Dr Truswell broadens the scope of the enquiry to the interface between syntactic structure and other, indirectly related, cognitive, and semantic structures such as aspect, agentivity, and presupposition. Uniting work from philosophical, cognitive andlinguistic perspectives, he develops a model of the internal structure of events as perceptual and cognitive units. He deploys the model to explain and predict the acceptability of particular formulations. He considers the individuation of events in the light of the model and provides a novelaccount of patterns of question formation. He shows that these patterns throw new light on central claims of Chomsky's biolinguistic minimalist program and Jackendoff's parallel architecture theory of mind and language. This is work at the cutting edge of linguistic theory, catholic in its theoretical scope, open to insights from cognate fields, and illustrated with examples from a wide range of languages. It will interest philosophers, semanticists and cognitive scientists concerned with topics like events,agentivity, and planning, as well as linguists studying syntax or the syntax-semantics interface.

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This book examines some knotty problems in natural language. These typically involve questions where the sense or the grammaticality of an utterance teeters on or over the edge of acceptability among native speakers. The phenomena in question have been examined within syntactic theory for overtwo decades with no wholly satisfactory out...

Robert Truswell is British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow in Linguistics and English Language at the School of Philosophy, Psychology, and Language Sciences, University of Edinburgh. His research broadly concerns the interfaces between syntax and semantics. He received his PhD in Phonetics and Linguistics from University College London i...
Format:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.01 inPublished:January 9, 2011Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199577781

ISBN - 13:9780199577781

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Table of Contents

1. IntroductionPart I: The Structure of Events2. The Variable Size of Events3. Single Events From Multiple Verb Phrases and the Role of Agentivity4. Structures Built From Eventspart II: Events and Locality5. Where We Stand6. Extraction From Adjuncts7. Extraction From Complement Clauses and rhe Effect of Tense8. Architectural Issues9. ConclusionReferencesAuthor IndexSubject Index