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The Argument Structure of Verbs with the Suffix - kan in Indonesian

The Argument Structure of Verbs with the Suffix - kan in Indonesian The verbal suffix -kan in acrolectal Indonesian gives the appearance of being a homonymous form with multiple functions. In many sentences the suffix seems to be a causative morpheme; in others it appears to be an applicative affix, while in yet others it seems to be an object marker. We show that these functions are in fact predictable if -kan is a derivational morpheme affecting the argument structure of the verb to which it is affixed. We argue that the role of -kan is to indicate the syntactic licensing of an argument in the argument structure that is not licensed syntactically by the base verb. Thus, the distribution of -kan provides evidence that there exist linguistic generalizations that need to be stated with respect to a distinct level of argument structure rather than with respect to such syntactic levels as S-Structure and Logical Form. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Oceanic Linguistics University of Hawai'I Press

The Argument Structure of Verbs with the Suffix - kan in Indonesian

Oceanic Linguistics , Volume 43 (2)

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2004 University of Hawai'i Press.
ISSN
1527-9421
Publisher site
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Abstract

The verbal suffix -kan in acrolectal Indonesian gives the appearance of being a homonymous form with multiple functions. In many sentences the suffix seems to be a causative morpheme; in others it appears to be an applicative affix, while in yet others it seems to be an object marker. We show that these functions are in fact predictable if -kan is a derivational morpheme affecting the argument structure of the verb to which it is affixed. We argue that the role of -kan is to indicate the syntactic licensing of an argument in the argument structure that is not licensed syntactically by the base verb. Thus, the distribution of -kan provides evidence that there exist linguistic generalizations that need to be stated with respect to a distinct level of argument structure rather than with respect to such syntactic levels as S-Structure and Logical Form.

Journal

Oceanic LinguisticsUniversity of Hawai'I Press

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