Modality and its Interaction with the Verbal System

Modality and its Interaction with the Verbal System

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This book provides a broad overview of the issues relevant for the study of syntax of modals and their interaction with the verbal system. A large number of novel observations are offered from a variety of languages, including Dutch, (Modern and Middle) English, German, Lele, Macedonian, Middle Dutch and Slovene. The wealth of data, the critical evaluation of existing syntactic analyses of modality and the alternative analyses proposed make the book interesting for both for descriptively and for theoretically oriented syntacticians. Major concerns addressed are: the distinction between epistemic and root modality (where the arguments pro and contra the assumption of a corresponding difference in syntactic structure are evaluated, refined, and supplemented by arguments for syntactic distinction between necessity and possibility modals and by consideration of the influence of the modal's complement on the interpretation), the interaction between modality and clausal phenomena (in particular negation, but also imperatives, aspect and Aktionsart), and the acquisition of modality (addressing cross-linguistic differences in the possibility for root infinitives to express modal interpretations and the late acquisition of epistemic interpretations as compared with non-epistemic interpretations).
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Product details

  • Hardback | 290 pages
  • 154.9 x 226.1 x 20.3mm | 498.96g
  • John Benjamins Publishing Co
  • Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • English
  • 1588111679
  • 9781588111678

Table of contents

1. List of contributors; 2. Preface; 3. Current issues in modality: An introduction to modality and its interaction with the verbal system (by Barbiers, Sjef); 4. Modal verbs: Epistemics in German and English (by Abraham, Werner); 5. Modality and polarity (by Barbiers, Sjef); 6. Modals, objects and negation in late Middle English (by Beukema, Frits); 7. On the use and interpretation of root infinitives in early child Dutch (by Blom, Elma); 8. Modals and negation in English (by Cormack, Annabel); 9. System interaction in the coding of modality (by Frajzyngier, Zygmunt); 10. Modality and theory of mind: Perspectives from language development and autism (by Papafragou, Anna); 11. Negative polarity and modality in Middle Dutch ghe-particle constructions (by Postma, Gertjan); 12. (Negative) Imperatives in Slovene (by Milojevic Sheppard, Milena); 13. Modality and mood in Macedonian (by Miseska Tomic, Olga); 14. Subject index; 15. Name index
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