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Parenthetical clauses and speech reporting: the case of shriek


Gentens, Caroline (2022). Parenthetical clauses and speech reporting: the case of shriek. Language Sciences, 90:101460.

Abstract

This study turns to the pathway of change whereby an originally intransitive manner-of-speaking predicate (e.g. babble, whisper, shout) comes to function in parenthetical clauses as a direct speech reporting predicate. On the descriptive plane, the paper presents a detailed analysis of the recent developments affecting shriek in Early and Late Modern English. The case presented here does not involve the standardly assumed ‘reduction’ of a main clause to an adverbial subject-verb phrase that seems to lack a clausal argument, but rather the augmentation of an intransitive predicate. It does not involve semantic bleaching to a core grammatical meaning such as epistemic hedges or mirative markers or a discursive meaning such as attention-getters, but instead maintains a lexically specific component of manner of speaking. The relevance of the case study is highlighted against the backdrop of broader trends related to transitivization processes with non-prototypical object patterns. The relatively abrupt development is in line with synchronic theories of event lexicalization, which predict that manner roots readily allow for certain argument augmentation patterns that derive a complex event structure. It can be explained on the basis of analogically facilitated co-optation, via a range of semantic and grammatical similarities to other predicates of manner-of-speaking. The study hopes to inspire studies comparing the pathways attested for different semantic subtypes of parentheticals, as well
as their interaction, in the near future.

Abstract

This study turns to the pathway of change whereby an originally intransitive manner-of-speaking predicate (e.g. babble, whisper, shout) comes to function in parenthetical clauses as a direct speech reporting predicate. On the descriptive plane, the paper presents a detailed analysis of the recent developments affecting shriek in Early and Late Modern English. The case presented here does not involve the standardly assumed ‘reduction’ of a main clause to an adverbial subject-verb phrase that seems to lack a clausal argument, but rather the augmentation of an intransitive predicate. It does not involve semantic bleaching to a core grammatical meaning such as epistemic hedges or mirative markers or a discursive meaning such as attention-getters, but instead maintains a lexically specific component of manner of speaking. The relevance of the case study is highlighted against the backdrop of broader trends related to transitivization processes with non-prototypical object patterns. The relatively abrupt development is in line with synchronic theories of event lexicalization, which predict that manner roots readily allow for certain argument augmentation patterns that derive a complex event structure. It can be explained on the basis of analogically facilitated co-optation, via a range of semantic and grammatical similarities to other predicates of manner-of-speaking. The study hopes to inspire studies comparing the pathways attested for different semantic subtypes of parentheticals, as well
as their interaction, in the near future.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > English Department
06 Faculty of Arts > Zurich Center for Linguistics
Dewey Decimal Classification:820 English & Old English literatures
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Language and Linguistics
Social Sciences & Humanities > Linguistics and Language
Language:English
Date:March 2022
Deposited On:22 Feb 2022 06:29
Last Modified:26 Jun 2024 01:54
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0388-0001
OA Status:Hybrid
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.langsci.2021.101460
  • Content: Published Version
  • Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)