Malefactivity in Japanese

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This paper attempts to shed new light on malefactivity in Japanese by examining how the adversative interpretation obtains in the Japanese passive constructions, both as a fully grammaticalized constructional meaning and a context-dependent interpretation. Our analysis reveals the general mechanisms underlying the adversative semantics and concomitant syntactic behavior such as valency increase, as well as elucidating the way they interact with language-particular features characteristic of Japanese. The overall picture gained by our analysis points to the importance of viewing adversative constructions in a broader perspective, as something which emerges from the interaction of various factors in the dynamic processes of contextualization and grammaticalization.


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