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Raciolinguistics

Edited by H. Samy Alim, John R. Rickford, and Arnetha F. Ball

Raciolinguistics "Brings together a critical mass of scholars to form a new field dedicated to theorizing and analyzing language and race together."


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Sociolinguistics from the Periphery

By Sari Pietikäinen, FinlandAlexandra Jaffe, Long BeachHelen Kelly-Holmes, and Nikolas Coupland

Sociolinguistics from the Periphery "presents a fascinating book about change: shifting political, economic and cultural conditions; ephemeral, sometimes even seasonal, multilingualism; and altered imaginaries for minority and indigenous languages and their users."


Academic Paper


Title: At the Interface of Grammaticalisation and Lexicalisation: The Case of Take Prisoner
Author: Eva Berlage
Institution: Universität Hamburg
Linguistic Field: Semantics
Subject Language: English
Abstract: Brinton & Traugott (2005) and Brinton (2008) have suggested that light verb constructions of the type take a look (at) are instances of grammaticalisation. This article shows that this is because the emphasis has been on the verb take. Exploring the light verb construction take prisoner, we see that one and the same construction involves both lexicalisation and grammaticalisation processes. For grammaticalisation, the focus will be on the semantic bleaching of take and the productivity of the pattern take + NP. For the lexicalisation of the construction, we will focus on the increasing fixedness of the collocation take prisoner, evident from the decreasing acceptability of the pattern make prisoner, and on the decategorialisation of the original NP prisoner, which is manifested in the loss of plural -s inflection in prisoner. The article further investigates the decategorialisation of prisoner, revealing that the word order of prisoner(s) relative to its complement NP (e.g. take the men prisoner(s) vs take prisoner(s) the men) has a considerable effect on the speed of plural s-deletion.

CUP AT LINGUIST

This article appears IN English Language and Linguistics Vol. 16, Issue 1.

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