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The Dative Alternation in English

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Title: The Dative Alternation in English
Authors: Wolfe-Quintero, Kate
Advisor: Richards, Jack C.
Long, Michael H.
Issue Date: 1993
Abstract: In English, there is a dative lexical alternation between a prepositional dative (PD) and a double object dative (DOD): I gnoe a book to lohn alternates with I gaae lohn a book. However, the dative alternation in English is more complex than this appears. There are three dative lexical structures and two alternations with four different types of constraints on how productive the DOD is. Fourteen different verb classes are affected by these constraints, leading to a complex picture that is verb dependent. In this paper I will discuss the syntactic and semantic characteristics of the alternation, the constraints and dative verb classes, and finally, the issue of markedness. It is important for language practitioners and acquisition researchers to understand the complexity of this alternation and the learnability issue. Acquisition of the dative alternation is not merely the acquisition of alternative syntactic structures, but the acquisition of the lexical characteristics of individual verbs, which is a far more complex task.
Pages/Duration: 30 pages
URI/DOI: http://hdl.handle.net/10125/40741
Appears in Collections:Working Papers



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