Studies in Natural Language and Linguistic Theory

Elements of Control

Structure and Meaning in Infinitival Constructions

Authors: Landau, Idan

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About this book

1. THE FUNDAMENTAL QUESTIONS OF CONTROL Imagine you are a child faced with the daunting task of acquiring the grammar of control in your language. You toddle around buoyantly (you should be past 3 by now), occasionally bumping into acoustic signals that miraculously map to "linguistic input". Some of them sound like this: (1) a. Robin, do you want _ to play with Kittie together? b. Come on, let me show you how _ to feed her. c. No Robin, Kittie doesn't like _ to be smacked. d. Robin, look what you've done! Bad boy! Time _ to go to bed. From your shelter under the kitchen table, you may draw the following conclusions: i) Mommy is very mad now; ii) Kittens make rotten toys; iii) My name must be Robin. Apart from the lesson in parental control, you also ought to learn something about grammatical control. In each of the sentences above, an element is missing (from the underlined position) that is nonetheless "filled-in" by your target grammar. This is what linguists term the "understood subject" of the infinitive. In order to be able to understand such sentences and produce similar ones yourself, you have to figure out the reference of the understood subject in every case. Thus, unless you are after some big trouble with Mommy, you had better conclude that the understood subject is Robin and Mommy in (la), Robin in (Ib), Kittie in (Ic) and everyone (especially Robin!) in (ld).

Table of contents (5 chapters)

Buy this book

eBook $44.99
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-94-011-3943-4
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Softcover $59.95
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-1-4020-0293-9
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Elements of Control
Book Subtitle
Structure and Meaning in Infinitival Constructions
Authors
Series Title
Studies in Natural Language and Linguistic Theory
Series Volume
51
Copyright
2000
Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Copyright Holder
Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht
eBook ISBN
978-94-011-3943-4
DOI
10.1007/978-94-011-3943-4
Softcover ISBN
978-1-4020-0293-9
Series ISSN
0924-4670
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
IX, 215
Topics