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Aspectual Issues cover

Aspectual Issues

Studies on Time and Quantity

Henk J. Verkuyl

How does atemporal quantity as expressed by isolated noun phrases, like four tables, some sandwiches, many books, get into time structure as expressed in sentences containing dynamic verbs like lift, eat and read? Does she lifted four tables mean ‘all four tables at once’, or ‘one by one’, or does it allow other configurations? Which principle governs the choice between a 3×4 (twelve tables lifted)—and a 1×4 (four tables lifted)—interpretation of Three girls lifted four tables? These questions follow from the study of the very complex construal of time structure on the basis of quantity information expressed in noun phrases and of information contributed by verbs.

This collection is a follow-up to Verkuyl's well-known 1993 volume, A Theory of Aspectuality, explaining and simplifying the exposition of his 1993 theory. The papers collected here also explore the consequences of this theory for a number of areas. In particular, Verkuyl addresses issues in the following areas: habituality; the role of aspectualizers marking the beginning, middle or end of events; the interaction between tense and aspectuality; the role of temporal Path structure in distributive and collective quantification; and the differences and correspondences in the ways in which Slavic, Germanic and Romance languages express aspectuality. Several papers contain a critical analysis of Davidson's event semantics. Verkuyl's critique suggests that neo-Davidsonians either use the wrong tools for a proper analysis of aspectuality, or that they need to adopt some of the crucial assumptions of his theory—in particular, the asymmetry inherent to aspectual construal and his consequent plea to take numbers, rather than events, as the primitives structuring our concept of time.

This volume presents one of the most prominent aspectual theories, offering a unified approach to the study of quantification and time structure.

Henk J. Verkuyl is a professor of linguistics at Utrecht University in The Netherlands.

Contents

  • List of Figures
  • 0 Introductions
    • 1 Some Historical Notes
    • 2 Issues explored
    • 3 The papers
    • 4 Provenience and Acknowledgements

  • 1 Events as Dividuals
    • 1 Introductory remarks
      • 1.1 Aim
      • 1.2 Some observations
      • 1.3 First order vs higher order
      • 1.4 Two Problems
    • 2 THe PLUG+-framework
      • 2.1 Introduction
      • 2.2 The successor function s
      • 2.3 The Path function l
      • 2.4 The participancy function π
      • 2.5 Tense and Progressive Form
      • 2.6 The three functions working together
    • 3 Event Semantics on aspectuality
      • 3.1 Davidson's anaphoric reference
      • 3.2 Vendler's Verbs and Times
      • 3.3 Parsons' Hold- and Cul-predicates
      • 3.4 Krifka's Aspectual Postulates
    • 4 Conclusion

  • 2 Indices and Habituality
    • 1 Introduction
    • 2 PLUG+ and the one event reading
      • 2.1 Introduction
      • 2.2 S′ = Tense(S)
      • 2.3 Aspectual asymmetry
      • 2.4 Path structure
      • 2.5 Verbs and Lexical Frames
      • 2.6 Conclusion
    • 3 Issues od habituality
      • 3.1 Introduction
      • 3.2 Cardinality information on collectives
      • 3.3 Quantifications
    • 4 Events or Indices

  • 3 Aspectualizers and Event Structures
    • 1 Introdution
    • 2 The Notion of Path
      • 2.1 Introduction
      • 2.2 Verb Phrase aspectuality
      • 2.3 The Path function l
      • 2.4 Two modes of interpretation
    • 3 Aspectualizers
      • 3.1 Introduction
      • 3.2 Restricting l
      • 3.3 Tense and -ing
      • 3.4 Habituality and Frequency
      • 3.5 Higher level aspectualizers
    • 4 Conclusion

  • 4 On the Syntax of Inner Aspectuality
    • 1 Introduction
    • 2 Two notion of syntax
    • 3 The role of the Verb in Slavic aspect
      • 3.1 A brief historical note
      • 3.2 Two approaches
      • 3.3 The traditional Slavist position
      • 3.4 Vendler's verb classes in English
      • 3.5 A knock-down argument
    • 4 A compositional approaches
      • 4.1 Features
      • 4.2 A Feature Algebra
      • 4.3 The Plus-Principle
    • 5 Compositionality in Slavic languages
      • 5.1 The range of prefixes
      • 5.2 Negation and perfectivity
      • 5.3 Phase aktionsart verbs
    • 6 Conclusion

  • 5 Tense, Aspect and Aspectual Composition
    • 1 Introduction
    • 2 Perfectivity and Imperfectivity in Slavic languages
    • 3 Terminativity and Durativity in Germanic languages
    • 4 Aspectual asymmetry
    • 5 How terminative is perfectivity?
    • 6 The Perctive Prefix as an operator
    • 7 INFL and PROG
    • 8 The French Imparfait and Passé Simple
    • 9 Habituality in Germanic languages
    • 10 ASP α′ and ASP α
    • 11 Imperfectivization in Slavic languages
    • 12 Perfectivity in Slavic languages
    • 13 Problems with bare plural NPs
    • 14 Conclusion

  • 6 Multiple Quantification
    • 1 Introduction
    • 2 Bareness and scopal ambiguity
    • 3 The One Reading Hypothesis
    • 4 Problems with the One Reading Hypothesis
    • 5 Aspectual assymetry and indices
    • 6 Two participancy functions
    • 7 Quantifying over
    • 8 Cutting the reading pie differently

  • 7 Distributivity and Collectively
    • 1 Introduction
      • 1.1 Generalized Quantification and Distributivity
      • 1.2 Some Opinions on Distributivity and Collectively
    • 2 Between Extremes
      • 2.1 Scha's Tripartition
      • 2.2 The Scale Approach
      • 2.3 Some Problems
      • 2.4 The Union Format
      • 2.5 The OCAC-principle
    • 3 Quantification and Totalization
      • 3.1 Bottom Elements: Individuals and Sets
      • 3.2 Distributivity and Conjunction
      • 3.3 Living Apart Together
      • 3.4 Kolkhoz-collectivity and Cumulativity
    • 4 A Historical Note and Conclusion

  • 8 Scope Ambiguity and the Verb Phrase
    • 1 Introduction
    • 2 The QR-tradition
    • 3 Choice functions
    • 4 Scopal Shiftas an Artefact of Atemporal Logic
    • 5 The NP VP relation
    • 6 The Path-function of l
    • 7 The participancy function π
    • 8 The VP as factor
    • 9 A generalization
    • 10 Asymmetry and dependency
    • 11 Entailment relations under wide and narrow scope
    • 12 If-clauses
    • 13 Relative clauses
    • 14 Wh-questions
    • 15 Conclusion

  • 9 (In-)definiteness and Temporal Measure Nouns
    • 1 Introduction
    • 2 Two sorts of unit nouns
    • 3 The dropping of the Preposition
    • 4 Analysis
    • 5 Some questions about (in-)definiteness
    • 6 Conlusion

  • Bibliography
  • Index

7/1/99

ISBN (Paperback): 157586200X (9781575862002)
ISBN (Cloth): 1575861992 (9781575861999)

Subject: Linguistics; Grammar—Aspect; Grammar—Tense

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