Programa do CILX2018

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TítuloImperfective coercion and temporal anaphora
AutoríaJuan Martin (University of Toledo)
ResumoAs is well known, the imperfect does not have referential autonomy in its progressive interpretation (Berthonneau and Kleiber 1993), and requires a temporal discourse antecedent to be licensed, as in (i):

(i)#(A las ocho), María tomaba un café.

The need for a temporal antecedent arises from the interaction of imperfectivity and dynamic / telic predicates, in event-internal imperfectivization (Leonetti 2017), therefore Imperfect cannot be treated as an intrinsically anaphoric tense.

This study argues that it is within the syntax that the different interpretations of the imperfect can be derived in a compositional way. In particular, Aspect Phrase (AspP) acts as a predicate of a temporal entity in the progressive interpretation of the Imperfect. This is triggered by aspectual marking of the AspP as [- quantized] (Krifka 1986/1992), which allows AspP not to bind any eventive variable and can itself act as a predicate for a temporal modifier binder.

The temporal expression is a contrastive topic (CT) when it is in the preverbal position (Buring 1997), given its phonological contour and syntactic distribution. As is well known, there can be just one CT per clause. In the second clause in (ii), the only possible interpretation is that at eight they were supposed to play, but there is no progressive reading available since the temporal expression cannot be a CT.

(ii) -A las ocho Pedro jugaba con Paco.

-No, a las ocho JAVIER jugaba con Paco.

Finally, the temporal expression may also occupy the last position in a sentence and, in this case, it is a narrow focus acting as a predicate (Zubizarreta 2014). The verb bears a variable that can be equated to the variable of a relative clause in a specificational structure. The present analysis is, therefore, a syncretism between the aspectual hypothesis (imperfective coercion) and the temporal analysis.
HorarioXoves 14 de xuño | 16:30 - 17:00 | Aula: C3