Russian Linguistics

, Volume 36, Issue 2, pp 193–211 | Cite as

Semantic defocusing: semantically motivated syntax of Russian SJA constructions



This paper aims to investigate the prototypical function of SJA and to classify SJA constructions in Russian. These so-called reflexive constructions express a ‘semantic defocus’, not intransitivity. By defocusing on a participant a different construal of a situation is shown. This different construal often leads the focus towards the action of the verb. Semantic defocusing is the prototype of SJA constructions in Russian. SJA constructions have diverse meanings and the categorization of these meanings shows the relationships among the SJA constructions. There are a number of elements that play a role in the realization of these diverse meanings, such as verbal aspects, the lexical meaning of a verb, etc. However, the subcategories of SJA constructions are related and the concept of semantic defocus plays an important role in the network of SJA constructions.


Semantic Network Lexical Meaning Accusative Case Perfective Aspect Instrumental Case 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Семантический дефокус: семантически мотивированный синтаксис конструкций c -СЯ в русском языке


Настоящая статья исследует прототипическую функцию -СЯ и классифицирует конструкции с -СЯ в русском языке. Так называемые «возвратные» конструкции выражают не непереходность, а «семантический дефокус». Дефокусировка одного из участников показывает различия в конструировании ситуации. А эти различия часто приводят к фокусировке на действии, обозначаемом данным глаголом. Поэтому семантический дефокус функционирует как прототип конструкций с -СЯ в русском языке. Конструкции с -СЯ выражают разнообразные значения; классификация этих значений выявляет семантические отношения между конструкциями. Элементами, оказывающими влияние на реализацию этих значений, являются глагольный вид, лексическое значение данного глагола и др. Субкатегории конструкций с -СЯ связаны между собой, и понятие семантического дефокуса играет важную роль в сети конструкций с -СЯ.


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Hankuk University of Foreign StudiesLanguage Research InstituteSeoulRepublic of Korea

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