An event structure account of English resultatives

Malka Rappaport Hovav*, Beth Levin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

177 Scopus citations

Abstract

Current syntactic accounts of English resultatives are based on the assumption that result XPs are predicated of underlying direct objects. This assumption has helped to explain the presence of reflexive pronouns with some intransitive verbs but not others and the apparent lack of result XPs predicated of subjects of transitive verbs. We present problems for and counterexamples to some of the basic assumptions of the syntactic approach, which undermine its explanatory power. We develop an alternative account that appeals to principles governing the well-formedness of event structure and the event structure-to-syntax mapping. This account covers the data on intransitive verbs and predicts the distribution of subject-predicated result XPs with transitive verbs.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)766-797
Number of pages32
JournalLanguage
Volume77
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2001

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