Quotative <i>go</i> and <i>be like</i>

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This chapter addresses the question how semantically non-reportative and grammatically intransitive verbs such as <i>be (like)</i> and go could come to be used in English quotative constructions. It rejects analyses which evoke the notion of &#8216;reporting verb&#8217; or, for <i>like</i>, of complementizer, and argues instead for an interclausal analysis in which clauses such as <i>I&#8217;m like</i> or <i>he went</i> as a whole are analysed as conceptually dependent on a complement clause. This analysis of the combinatorics involved in these constructions helps to explain their emergence as an analogical process in which &#8216;imitation clauses&#8217; are apprehended as &#8216;reporting clauses&#8217;, and invites a reassessment of the extent to which this initial innovation and its further developments constitute a case of &#8216;grammaticalization&#8217;.


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