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ERIC Number: ED210942
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981
Reference Count: 0
Inalienable Possession in Romance: Grammar or Inference?
Kliffer, Michael D.
The central purpose of this paper is to demonstrate that inalienable possession (IP) in Romance languages hinges more on inferences than is commonly assumed. Most of the analysis concerns Spanish because that language provides the best evidence of how IP is non-grammatical in the sense that it is free of morpho-syntactic constraints. French and Italian data are cited when parallel to Spanish. Generally pedagogical manuals instruct the student to avoid the possessive adjective with inalienables, usually parts of the body. Analysis of several types of sentences indicates that IP lacks any constant tie to a given morpho-syntactic pattern and that the link between possessor and inalienable seems dependent more on contextual plausibility than on any unequivocal grammatical signal reserved for IP. The conclusion makes some observations on comparable structures in French. (AMH)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Possessives; Prepositions
Note: A revised version of a paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Linguistic Society of America (56th, New York, NY, December 28-30, 1981).