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Yearbook of the German Cognitive Linguistics Association

Editor-in-Chief: Stefanowitsch, Anatol / Schoenefeld, Doris

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Idiosyncrasies and generalizations: Argument structure, semantic roles and the valency realization principle

Thomas Herbst
Published Online: 2014-12-16 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/gcla-2014-0015


This article argues in favour of dealing with valency phenomena and collocations in terms of constructions. An attempt is made to combine Goldberg’s model of argument structure constructions with item-specific valency constructions. It is argued that it may be appropriate to distinguish not only between verb-specific participant roles and argument roles, but to introduce a further level of clausal roles to account for AGENTIVITY and AFFECTEDNESS typically associated with subjects and traditional direct objects. Finally, the issue of to what extent the syntactic behaviour of verbs can be predicted from their meaning is taken up and it is shown that Goldberg’s Semantic Coherence Principle and Correspondence Principle have to be supplemented by a Valency Realisation Principle.

Keywords : construction; creativity; generalization; item-specificity; valence/ valency; valency realisation principle

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Published Online: 2014-12-16

Published in Print: 2014-11-01

Citation Information: Yearbook of the German Cognitive Linguistics Association, Volume 2, Issue 1, Pages 253–290, ISSN (Online) 2197-2796, ISSN (Print) 2197-2788, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/gcla-2014-0015.

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