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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/31805

Title: External Argument Introducers
Authors: Kim, Kyumin
Advisor: Massam, Diane
Department: Linguistics
Keywords: external argument, Voice, Applicative, agent, non-agent, syntax-semantic mapping
Issue Date: 10-Jan-2012
Abstract: This thesis shows that the mapping of semantics to syntax can be more complex than is generally assumed. In general, the mapping of semantics to syntax is thought to be many-to-one; for instance, many types of external argument roles are mapped to a subject position, and a theme or patient role is mapped to an object position. Contrary to this view, I show, by studying the syntax and semantics of external arguments, that one-to-one mapping between syntax and semantics is possible. External arguments are generally assumed to be introduced by a functional head, called Voice or v, regardless of the semantics of the argument, rather than being actual arguments of the verbs. A high Appl head similar to Voice has recently been argued to introduce external arguments as well as arguments of other semantic types. At present, no theories propose how these heads are distinguished in argument structure. This thesis articulates the differences between the external argument introducing heads and explores the consequences of these differences. Moreover, this thesis proposes a new type of event-related applicative, namely peripheral Appl. Like Voice and high Appl, peripheral Appl introduces an argument external to the verb phrase. The key differences among the external argument introducing heads are in their semantics as well as their syntactic position. Semantically, Voice is specified for agentivity, but high and peripheral Appls are specified for non-agentivity. Syntactically, high Appl merges below Voice, not above, while peripheral Appl can merge above Voice. An important result emerging from this thesis is that not all external arguments are treated in the same way in syntax: not only are agent and non-agent external argument roles mapped into different positions, but different types of non-agent roles are also mapped into different positions.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/31805
Appears in Collections:Doctoral

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