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RvH18_2

Abstract:

The aim of this paper is to explain differences in the degrees of acceptability of sentences with co-occurring telic verbs and atelic durative time span adverbials. The interpretation of such sentences requires coercion of the aspectual information, solving the semantic mismatch by making the conflicting information compatible. Successful coercion means that a sentence will thereby achieve perfect acceptability, whereas less successful coercion will produce lower degrees of acceptability. The results of 37 participants rating the acceptability of 30 sentences with conflicting aspectual information were as follows: 1. Telic verbs describing a process promote successful coercion. 2. Specific semantic properties of the nominal phrases (NPs) contribute to coercion. Cumulative NPs denoting concrete entities (e.g., bare concrete mass nouns) promote coercion and so give higher acceptability scores. NPs denoting abstract entities promote coercion only when they are definite. The results show that the aspectual interpretation of sentences is supported by processes of semantic enrichment to resolve the co-occurrence of conflicting linguistic expressions. Our study also reveals that we need to address how we can implement contextual information in an experimental set-up to address the remaining gaps in explaining the differences in the acceptability ratings.

Type: Article

Author: Michael Richter and Roeland van Hout
Title: Aspectual coercion of telic verbs and atelic adverbials in German: Acceptability judgments on sentences with conflicting aspectual information by native speakers
Journal: Lingua
Year: 2018
Volume:214(C)
Number:DOI: 10.1016/j.lingua.2018.08.004
Pages:59 -- 73
@ARTICLE{RvH18_2,
AUTHOR = {Michael Richter and Roeland van Hout},
TITLE = {Aspectual coercion of telic verbs and atelic adverbials in German: Acceptability judgments on sentences with conflicting aspectual information by native speakers},
JOURNAL = {Lingua},
YEAR = {2018},
VOLUME = {214(C)},
NUMBER = {DOI: 10.1016/j.lingua.2018.08.004},
PAGES = {59 -- 73}
}