Alternative expressions of 'want' complements

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The complements of “want” predicate may vary depending on the identity of the main and the dependent subjects. When identical, five main tendencies are found cross-linguistically: (i) the dependent subject is omitted, (ii) the dependent subject is overtly expressed, (iii) “want” is a desiderative affix or (iv) an uninflected particle, and (v) there are alternative choices (Haspelmath 2005). Using data from the Uto-Aztecan family, this article focuses on one of the less common means, the co-existence of alternative expressions. The analysis provides an account for this phenomenon in light of the Interclausal Relations Hierarchy (Van Valin 2005): whenever there are available structures in a language, the tightest linkage encodes intention, and the less tight expresses different mental states.


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