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LINGUIST List 20.3973

Thu Nov 19 2009

Diss: Historical Ling: Blakemore: 'Intend Returning: Um estudo...'

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        1.    Heather Blakemore, Intend Returning: Um estudo diacrônico de complementos indefinidos na língua inglesa, baseado em dados de corpora

Message 1: Intend Returning: Um estudo diacrônico de complementos indefinidos na língua inglesa, baseado em dados de corpora
Date: 17-Nov-2009
From: Heather Blakemore <Heather.Blakemoregmail.com>
Subject: Intend Returning: Um estudo diacrônico de complementos indefinidos na língua inglesa, baseado em dados de corpora
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Institution: Federal University of Minas Gerais
Program: Linguistics Post-Graduate Programme
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2009

Author: Heather Jean Blakemore

Dissertation Title: Intend Returning: Um estudo diacrônico de complementos indefinidos na língua inglesa, baseado em dados de corpora

Dissertation URL: http://www.letras.ufmg.br/poslin/tese_detalhes.asp?aluno=681

Linguistic Field(s): Historical Linguistics

Subject Language(s): English (eng)

Dissertation Director:
Heliana Mello

Dissertation Abstract:

Starting from the chaos of contemporary synchronic data, I sought patterns
in usage of indefinite verbal complements in the form of gerunds and
infinitives. The methodology employed a personalized database built from
relevant corpora. Analyses utilized Cognitive Grammar (Langacker, 1987,
1991, 2000) with Usage-based Models of Language (Barlow & Kemmer, 2000).
Extensive study of the literature on the question led to the conviction
that existing analyses of synchronic contemporary data could receive
substantial illumination from diachronic corpus data. Consequently,
research was extended to historical uses of these verbal complements,
resulting in the discovery of complex and interacting changes in English
syntax. Growth of the gerund complement in both token and construction
types was verified as a change in progress. The two factors identified as
having the greatest explanatory power over the current system of verbal
complements are respectively historical and contemporary, specifically
certain verbs' later entry into English and current frequency rates of use.
I introduce a Kemmer-type feedback loop mechanism of language change to
explain the two factors according to the hypothesis that the first factor
is partially responsible for the second. Taken together, the factors and
the mechanism form the most significant contribution offered by this
original research: a historical explanation of the processes resulting in
current differences between the two forms, both in meaning and syntactic
distribution.



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