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Semantic and pragmatic motivations for constructional preferences: a corpus-based study of provide, supply, and present

(2011) JOURNAL OF ENGLISH LINGUISTICS. 39(4). p.359-391
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Abstract
A select group of transfer verbs can enter into four different constructions: the ditransitive construction (He provided John the money), the prepositional-dative construction (He provided the money to John), a construction with a prepositional theme (He provided John with the money), and a construction with a recipient realized by a for-phrase (He provided the money for John). In this article, we take a close look at three such verbs: provide, supply, and present. Corpus analysis shows that these three verbs display different structural preferences with respect to the for-, to-, and with-patterns. To explain these preferences, the study investigates pragmatic principles (following Mukherjee 2001 on provide) and the role played by semantic factors. An examination of the semantics of the verbs and the lexically motivated constructional semantics of the to, for, and with-patterns shows (i) that the three constructions are not interchangeable, and (ii) that the preferential differences between the three verbs find an explanation in the compatibility between lexical and constructional semantics. The description is mainly based on data from the British National Corpus.
Keywords
information structure, constructional semantics, verb alternation patterns, lexical semantics

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Chicago
De Clerck, Bernard, Martine Delorge, and Anne-Marie Vandenbergen. 2011. “Semantic and Pragmatic Motivations for Constructional Preferences: a Corpus-based Study of Provide, Supply, and Present.” Journal of English Linguistics 39 (4): 359–391.
APA
De Clerck, B., Delorge, M., & Vandenbergen, A.-M. (2011). Semantic and pragmatic motivations for constructional preferences: a corpus-based study of provide, supply, and present. JOURNAL OF ENGLISH LINGUISTICS, 39(4), 359–391.
Vancouver
1.
De Clerck B, Delorge M, Vandenbergen A-M. Semantic and pragmatic motivations for constructional preferences: a corpus-based study of provide, supply, and present. JOURNAL OF ENGLISH LINGUISTICS. 2011;39(4):359–91.
MLA
De Clerck, Bernard, Martine Delorge, and Anne-Marie Vandenbergen. “Semantic and Pragmatic Motivations for Constructional Preferences: a Corpus-based Study of Provide, Supply, and Present.” JOURNAL OF ENGLISH LINGUISTICS 39.4 (2011): 359–391. Print.
@article{1998359,
  abstract     = {A select group of transfer verbs can enter into four different constructions: the ditransitive construction (He provided John the money), the prepositional-dative construction (He provided the money to John), a construction with a prepositional theme (He provided John with the money), and a construction with a recipient realized by a for-phrase (He provided the money for John). In this article, we take a close look at three such verbs: provide, supply, and present. Corpus analysis shows that these three verbs display different structural preferences with respect to the for-, to-, and with-patterns. To explain these preferences, the study investigates pragmatic principles (following Mukherjee 2001 on provide) and the role played by semantic factors. An examination of the semantics of the verbs and the lexically motivated constructional semantics of the to, for, and with-patterns shows (i) that the three constructions are not interchangeable, and (ii) that the preferential differences between the three verbs find an explanation in the compatibility between lexical and constructional semantics. The description is mainly based on data from the British National Corpus.},
  author       = {De Clerck, Bernard and Delorge, Martine and Vandenbergen, Anne-Marie},
  issn         = {0075-4242},
  journal      = {JOURNAL OF ENGLISH LINGUISTICS},
  keyword      = {information structure,constructional semantics,verb alternation patterns,lexical semantics},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {4},
  pages        = {359--391},
  title        = {Semantic and pragmatic motivations for constructional preferences: a corpus-based study of provide, supply, and present},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0075424211421346},
  volume       = {39},
  year         = {2011},
}

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