Hole, Daniel (2006): Extra argumentality - affectees, landmarks, and voice. In: Linguistics, Vol. 44, Nr. 2: S. 383-424




This article investigates sentences with additional core arguments of a special type in three languages, viz. German, English, and Mandarin. These additional arguments, called extra arguments in the article, form a crosslinguistically homogeneous class by virtue of their structural and semantic similarities, with so-called "raised possessors" forming just a sub-group among them. Structurally, extra arguments may not be the most deeply embedded arguments in a sentence. Semantically, their referents are felt to stand in a specific relation to the referent of the/a more deeply embedded argument. There are two major thematic relations that are instantiated by extra arguments, viz. affectees and landmarks. These thematic role notions are justified in the context of and partly in contrast to, Dowty's (1991) proto-role approach. An affectee combines proto-agent with proto-patient properties in eventualities that are construed as involving causation. A landmark is a ground with respect to some spatial configuration denoted by the predication at hand, but a figure at the highest level of gestalt partitioning that is relevant in a clause. Thereby, both affectees and landmarks are inherently hybrid categories. The account of extra argumentality is couched in a neo-Davidsonian event semantics in the spirit of Kratzer (1996, 2003), and voice heads are assumed to introduce affectee arguments and landmark arguments right above VP.