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The Syntax and Semantics of Middle Constructions: A Study With Special Reference to German

Fagan, Sarah M.B.

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ISBN 10: 0521410606 / ISBN 13: 9780521410601
Published by Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1992
Used Condition: Very Good Hardcover
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About this Item

x, 300pp., index, biblio., notes. Light wear to jacket, old price label inside front, previous owner's name on title page. Cambridge Studies in Linguistics 60. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Bookseller Inventory # 009098

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Syntax and Semantics of Middle ...

Publisher: Cambridge University Press, Cambridge

Publication Date: 1992

Binding: Cloth

Book Condition:Very Good

Dust Jacket Condition: Good

Edition: First.

Book Type: Book

About this title


This study provides a comprehensive description and analysis of the syntax and semantics of middle constructions in German, including those formed by using the auxiliary lassen 'let'. English and French middles are also treated in depth for comparative purposes. Sarah Fagan argues that middle constructions are not to be accounted for in the syntax, but rather in a bipartite lexicon consisting of Static and Dynamic components. This division of the lexicon helps to clarify the analysis in a number of ways. The author also considers middles in the context of recent work on generics, and examines Vendler's typology of aspectual verb classes in the light of middle formation in German and English. The study addresses a number of issues in the syntax of modern German relevant to our understanding of universal grammar: 1. the appearance of ergative predicates in German: 2. the implications of impersonal clauses in German: and 3. the use of reflexives in argument positions. The value of this study is greatly enhanced by the wealth of language data and descriptive detail given.

Book Description:

This study comprehensively describes and analyses the syntax and semantics of German reflexive constructions known as middles (e.g. Das Buch liest sich leicht 'The book reads easily'), including those formed with lassen 'let'. It provides an in-depth comparison of German middles and middle constructions in English and French, and the only detailed account written in English.

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