The role of low heads in the causative interpretation in Brazilian Portuguese: some notes on event composition, f-seq and Nanosyntax
Thayse Ferreira, Valdilena Rammé
September 2019

In this paper, we investigate the causativization process in Brazilian Portuguese in order to understand the constraints and generalizations that allow us to explain the apparently chaotic data in this language. We explore the hypothetico-deductive method and hypothesize that there are elements from the Aktionsarten domain that determine the verbal behavior in relation with a causative meaning. Consequently, we present a theoretical review of aspectual classes, employing the tools of a recent approach to the architecture of grammar named Nanosyntax (STARKE, 2009). Thereby, it will be possible to understand the finer-grained constraints that the classes of ‘states’ and ‘accomplishments’, for instance, impose for the causativization, taking into account ‘nano’ syntactic and semantic features, such as Initiation, Process, Result and Boundness. We conclude, therefore, that for a predicate to be interpreted as a causative one, the event denoted by it needs to be dynamic in its nature. In addition, we show that the functional sequence (F-seq), in the way it is proposed within the nanosyntactic model, allows us to explain the possible association of more than one syntactic node with the same verbal argument, as well as its underassociation and consequent identification with a null causative nucleus, as it happens to be the case in Brazilian Portuguese causativization.
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Reference: lingbuzz/005035
(please use that when you cite this article)
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keywords: causativization. event composition. aktionsarten. nanosyntax. functional hierarchy of the verbal domain., semantics, syntax
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