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On trans-derivational operations: generative semantics and tree adjoining grammar

Krivochen, D. G. (2019) On trans-derivational operations: generative semantics and tree adjoining grammar. Language Sciences, 74. pp. 47-76. ISSN 0388-0001

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1016/j.langsci.2019.04.002


The possibility of formulating conditions that made reference to multiple derivations was a staple of early work in Generative Semantics. In this paper we explore the possibility of having constraints arise from the interaction between derivations in an extended Generative Semantics-type (GS) grammar. In GS syntactic operations apply to semantic material in phrase structure trees; in our extension, these operations can apply within and across derivations. To this end, we will appeal to Tree Adjoining Grammars (TAG; Joshi, 1985 and much subsequent work). The model we propose thus assumes two basic operations, which are the singulary and the generalized versions of a single compositional generative operation. The singulary, tree-internal version is Predicate Raising, which ‘adjoins a predicate to the next higher predicate’ (McCawley, 1973a [1968]: 157); the generalized version is Adjoin, which ‘composes an auxiliary tree β with a tree γ’ (Joshi, 1985: 209), thus applying trans-derivationally. The empirical motivation for this expansion of generative semantics comes from the analysis of an apparently anomalous case of secondary predication in Spanish and English, which –we argue- shares properties with depictive and resultative constructions but in fact is neither.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Interdisciplinary Research Centres (IDRCs) > Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics (CINN)
ID Code:84196

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