Individuals in Time

Tense, aspect and the individual/stage distinction

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This monograph investigates the temporal properties of those predicates referring to individuals – the so-called individual-level (IL) predicates – in contrast to those known as stage-level (SL) predicates. Many of the traditional tenets attributed to the IL/SL dichotomy are not solidly founded, this book claims, as it examines current theoretical issues concerning the syntax/semantics inter&#173;face such as the relation between semantic prop&#173;erties of predicates and their syntactic structure. By using the contrast found in Spanish copular clauses (<i>ser</i> vs. <i>estar</i>), <i>Individuals in Time</i> shows that the conception of IL predicates as permanent and stative cannot be maintained. The existence of nonstative IL predicates is demonstrated through analyzing the correlation between the syntactic presence of certain projections (specifi&#173;cally, preposi&#173;tional complements) and process-like aspect properties. This detailed examin&#173;ation of IL predicates in the domains of inner aspect, outer aspect, and tense will be welcomed by scholars and students with an interest in event structure, tense, and aspect.

Subjects: Syntax; Semantics; Generative linguistics; Romance linguistics; Theoretical linguistics

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