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LINGUIST List 16.2474

Wed Aug 24 2005

Diss: Semantics/Syntax:Cappelle:'Particle Patterns ...'

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        1.    Bert Cappelle, Particle Patterns in English: A comprehensive coverage

Message 1: Particle Patterns in English: A comprehensive coverage
Date: 24-Aug-2005
From: Bert Cappelle <bert.cappellekulak.ac.be>
Subject: Particle Patterns in English: A comprehensive coverage

Institution: K.U.Leuven
Program: Doctoraat in de Taal- en Letterkunde: Germaanse Talen
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2005

Author: Bert Cappelle

Dissertation Title: Particle Patterns in English: A comprehensive coverage

Dissertation URL: http://hdl.handle.net/1979/51

Linguistic Field(s): Pragmatics

Subject Language(s): English (ENG)

Dissertation Director:
Renaat Declerck
Joop Van der Horst

Dissertation Abstract:

The English language makes ample use of verbs combined with a particle (go
away, give up, fool around, laugh one's socks off, etc.). Such combinations
are often described individually as seperate entities, witness the large
supply of dictionaries of phrasal verbs. However, the individual
combinations also exhibit numerous regularities among them that cannot be
brought out in a purely lexical approach. This dissertation aims to provide
a comprehensive descriptive overview of the productive and semi-productive
grammatical patterns that we can extract from the diverse combinations and
from the way they are used in different grammatical contexts.

Among other issues, the author investigates whether particles are aptly
analyzed as merely 'intransitive prepositions' (i.e. wether, e.g., walk
across is nothing but a shortened and less specific version of, say, walk
across the desert), how we should describe the structure of an expanded
particle phrase (as in walk [right on across to the other side]), how VPs
with a particle can differ in transitivity from corresponding VPs without a
particle (cp. grammatical The dog barked me away and ungrammatical *The
dog barked me), what patterns with an aspectually (rather than spatially)
used particle there are (e.g. joke around as opposed to walk around; nerd
it up as opposed to toss it up).

'Pattern' has a double meaning in this dissertation: it can refer to
'construction' (in a wide, Construction Grammar sense) on the one hand
and to 'regularly occurring relation between constructions' on the other.
For example, 'V Prt NP' (as in glam up the place) and 'V NP Prt' (as in
glam the place up) are both patterns in the first sense, and the fact that
these two orderings can (often) be used interchangeably is by virtue of
there being a pattern in the second sense. By considering alternations,
too, as linguistic units, I am giving the oft-discredited transformations
of Chomskyan linguistics a new place in the grammar of a language.

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