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"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more

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To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.

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Book Information


Title: Preferred Argument Structure
Subtitle: Grammar as architecture for function
Edited By: John W. Du Bois
Lorraine E. Kumpf
William J. Ashby
URL: http://www.benjamins.nl/cgi-bin/t_bookview.cgi?bookid=SiDaG_14
Series Title: Studies in Discourse and Grammar 14

Preferred Argument Structure offers a profound insight into the relationship between language use and grammatical structure. In his original publication on Preferred Argument Structure, Du Bois (1987) demonstrated the power of this perspective by using it to explain the origins of ergativity and ergative marking systems. Since this work, the general applicability of Preferred Argument Structure has been demonstrated in studies of language after language. In this collection, the authors move beyond verifying Preferred Argument Structure as a property of a given language. They use the methodology to reveal more subtle aspects of the patterns, for example, to look across languages, diachronically or synchronically, to examine particular grammatical relations, and to examine special populations or particular genres. This volume will appeal to linguists interested in the relationship of pragmatics and grammar generally, in the typology of grammatical relations, and in explanations derived from data- and corpus-based approaches to analysis.

Table of contents

Preface vii
Abbreviations ix
John W. Du Bois, Lorraine E. Kumpf and William J. Ashby 1–10
Argument structure: Grammar in use
John W. Du Bois 11–60
Preferred Argument Structure across time and space: A comparative diachronic analysis of French and Spanish
William J. Ashby and Paola A. Bentivoglio 61–80
The lexicon in interaction: Developmental origins of Preferred Argument Structure in Korean
Patricia M. Clancy 81–108
Genre and Preferred Argument Structure: Sources of argument structure in classroom discourse
Lorraine E. Kumpf 109–130
Issues in the comparative argument structure analysis in Mayan narratives
Nora C. England and Laura Martin 131–157
New light on information pressure: Information conduits, “escape valves”, and role alignment stretching
Mark Durie 159–196
Beyond Preferred Argument Structure: Sentences, pronouns, and given referents in Nepali
Carol Genetti and Laura D. Crain 197–223
Multiple constraints on reference form: Null, pronominal, and full reference in Mapudungun
Jennifer E. Arnold 225–245
Argument splits in Finnish grammar and discourse
Marja-Liisa Helasvuo 247–272
Core arguments and the inversion of the nominal hierarchy in Roviana
Simon H. Corston-Oliver 273–300
Preferred Argument Structure in early Inuktitut spontaneous speech data
Shanley E.M. Allen and Heike Schröder 301–338
The role of Preferred Argument Structure for understanding aphasic sentence planning
Susan E. Kohn and Ana Cragnolino 339–351
Nominal information flow in the talk of two boys with autism
Elizabeth G. Weber 353–383
Tracking the deer: Nominal reference, parallelism and Preferred Argument Structure in Itzaj Maya narrative genres
Charles Andrew Hofling 385–410
Narrator virtuosity and the strategic exploitation of Preferred Argument Structure in Mocho: Repetition and constructed speech in Mocho narrative
Laura Martin 411–435
Preferred Argument Structure Bibliography 437–445
Name index 447–448
Language index 449–450
Subject index 451–458

Publication Year: 2003
Publisher: John Benjamins
Review: Read the review
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Linguistic Theories
Functional & Systemic Ling
Issue: All announcements sent out by The LINGUIST List are emailed to our subscribers and archived with the Library of Congress.
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Format: Hardback
ISBN: 9027226245
ISBN-13: N/A
Pages: x, 459 pp.
Prices: EUR 115.00
Format: Hardback
ISBN: 1588113698
ISBN-13: 9781588113696
Pages: x, 459 pp.
Prices: U.S. $ 176