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School of Languages, Linguistics and Film

Guest Speaker Seminar Series | Emily Hanink (Manchester)

When: Wednesday, December 8, 2021, 4:30 PM - 6:00 PM
Where: Arts Two 2.17, Mile End

We welcome Dr Emily Hanink at QMUL to present her research. 

Title: Mixed projections in subject-characterizing nominalizations
A good deal of work on deverbal nominalizations examines the nature of so-called 'mixed categories' (Bresnan 1997) or 'mixed extended projections' (Borsley and Kornfilt 1999), with an emphasis on locating the “cut-off” point between the verbal and nominal components in nominalizations that show properties of both categories. While this work has demonstrated that the amount of verbal structure in nominalizations may vary across languages, the domain of investigation has been limited largely to nominalizations that characterize events, with less attention paid to those that characterize ordinary individuals.  Strikingly, Baker and Vinokurova (2009) argue in one relevant study that subject nominalizations (e.g., writer) differ from event-characterizing nominalizations precisely in that their verbal structure is rather limited cross-linguistically; constructions that are superficially similar but which contain more verbal structure are likely relative clauses instead. This talk contributes to the empirical landscape of this nominalization type through the investigation of deverbal subject nominalizations in Washo (isolate, United States). I argue that the verbal component of this construction is rather articulated, but that, despite displaying some relative clause-type properties, it is still a true case of nominalization. The results of this study support a view in which individual-characterizing nominalizations are not categorically different from their event-characterizing counterparts, and in which the distinction between nominalization and relativization is more of a cline than a dichotomy.

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