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Title: A Unified analysis of the English suffix -ing
Authors: Campana, Mark
Keywords: Indo-European Languages
Germanic Languages
Issue Date: 1984
Publisher: McGill University
Abstract: Within the framework of generative morphology, this thesis represents an attempt to characterize deverbal -ing forms in a systematic way. As there are no significant phonological or semantic differences between these forms, it is assumed that English contains only one deverbal -ing Suffix. Various means are proposed to account for the fact that words containing this suffix may function as nouns, verbs or adjectives. The analysis crucially depends on two proposals. One is that verbs are partially specified for the features that determine syntactic categories. The second proposal relies on a process of zero-derivation for forming nominals ending in -ing. In addition, 4the proposed analysis requires a modification of the theory of argument structure proposed by Williams (1981a) In Williams' theory, morphological rules had the effect of either 'internalizing" or 'externalizing' an argument. In the analysis presented here, arguments may also acquire an optional status and, in some cases, undergo deletion.
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