Dative Alternation: A Syntactic and Semantic Phenomenon

9783659598135: Dative Alternation: A Syntactic and Semantic Phenomenon

Ditransitive verbs are those which have two internal arguments, a fact that has raised a number of questions concerning their syntactic structure. One of these questions is related to a variation in structure known as Dative Alternation. Such an alternation seems to be restricted only to some languages; it occurs in English, but apparently cannot be found in Romance languages, like Portuguese. There is, however, a change in meaning caused by the alternation in the languages where it can be found; in English, for instance, the structure known as dative (V NP PP) is associated with a motion meaning, while its alternate, the double-object variant, or DOC (V NP NP), is associated with a meaning of possession. This fact raises a question as to how languages which do not present Dative Alternation convey such meanings. In studying ditransitive verbs in Portuguese, it is possible to observe that there is an alternation in structure, even if it does not seem to follow the same pattern as Dative Alternation does in English. This book is intended to study such alternations, both in Portuguese and English, and to explain the difference in meaning resulting from such structures.

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About the Author:

Fernanda S. Fritsch studied at Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil) where she successfully completed two degrees: a B.A. in Languages and Literature, and a M.A. in Linguistics. As a scholar, she has taught at Utah Valley University, in the United States.

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