This book is mainly concerned with the relation between language and cognition. It shows that many phenomena usually analyzed as grammatical can be described in a more simple and convenient way by postulating direct connection between syntactic complements and cognitive relations present in the schema evoked by the verb. This leads to the examination, and proposed solution, of some important theoretical and practical problems of the description of the lexicogrammatical structure of languages, and in particular of verb valency. The book focuses on thematic relations, a topic which has been the object of much discussion, and some confusion, in the recent literature. It proposes that assignment of thematic relations to sentence complements can in many cases be achieved by default, that is, by direct reference to variables present in the schema evoked by the main verb of the sentence. With this, many current uncertainties and confusions concerning the definition and delimitation of semantic roles are solved in a linguistically simple, empirically well-founded, and economical way.
KeywordsAssignment by default Language and cognition Semantic roles Thematic relations
- Castelfranchi, C., & Parisi, D. (1980). Linguaggio, conoscenze e scopi [Language, knowledge and scopes]. Bologna: Il Mulino.Google Scholar
- Gross, M. (1975). Méthodes en syntaxe. Paris: Hermann.Google Scholar
- Langacker, R. W. (1987). Foundations of Cognitive Grammar – vol. I, Theoretical Prerequisites. Stanford: Stanford University Press.Google Scholar
- Langacker, R. W. (1991a). Foundations of cognitive grammar. Vol. 2: Descriptive application. Stanford: Stanford University Press.Google Scholar
- Langacker, R. W. (1991b). Concept, image, and symbol: The cognitive basis of grammar. Berlin: Mouton De Gruyter.Google Scholar
- Perini, Mário A., Lúcia, F., Regina, B., Sigrid, F. (1996). O Sintagma nominal em português: Estrutura, significado e função. [The NP in Portuguese: structure, meaning, and function] Revista de Estudos da Linguagem (special number). Belo Horizonte: UFMG. Available at <periodicos.letras.ufmg.br / index.php / relin / issue / view / 409>.Google Scholar