The lexicalist hypothesis and the semantics of event nominalization suffixes

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This article approaches the debate between lexicalist and syntactic accounts on derivational morphology from a semantic viewpoint. It is argued that the debate between lexicalist and syntactic accounts on event nominalizations may not be solved without thoroughly investigating the different semantic components potentially influencing the characteristics of the derivatives, i.e. the semantics of the nominalization procedure as such, the meaning of the derivational bases and the meaning of the nominalization suffixes. Concentrating on the latter component, the article finally presents a semantic analysis of the French nominalization suffixes -<i>ment</i> and -<i>age,</i> in order to reveal the significance of the nominalization suffixes for the debate concerning the proper treatment of event nominalizations.


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