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Thematic Structure and Syntax: Revisiting English Depictive Predications

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Authors
Noh, Bokyung
Issue Date
2003
Publisher
서울대학교 언어교육원
Citation
어학연구, Vol.39 No.1, pp. 21-37
Keywords
Englishdepictive predicatesthematic structureagenttheme
Abstract
English depictive predicates have been analyzed as adjuncts, but their occurrences are not entirely free in that only certain types of predicates allow for the depictive predication constructions. Such restrictions have
been analyzed in terms of the distinctions between Stage-Level Predicates and Individual-Level Predicates (Rapoport, 1993): both a main verb and a depictive predicate should be Stage-Level Predicates. However, I argue that the distinction is not sufficient to explain the English depictive predication constructions. Instead of the old distinctions, in this paper I suggest that it is more explanatory to analyze them on the bases of
thematic roles: the predication subject of a depictive predicate bears either an agent or a theme role from a main verb. In this sense, I define them in terms of an Agent-Oriented Depictive (AOD) and a Theme-Oriented Depictives (TODs). They differ in that the AOD is predicated of the entity bearing an agent role, whereas the TOD is predicated of the entity bearing the theme role. The distinctive properties between AODs and TODs are explained by Thematic Hierarchy (Baker, 1988; Bresnan, 1989).
ISSN
0254-4474
Language
English
URI
https://hdl.handle.net/10371/86276
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Language Education Institute (언어교육원)Language Research (어학연구)Language Research (어학연구) Volume 39 Number 1/4 (2003)
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