Optimality-Theoretic Lexical Mapping Theory: A Case Study of Locative Inversion

Optimality-Theoretic Lexical Mapping Theory: A Case Study of Locative Inversion

One-Soon Her (National Chengchi University, Taiwan)
Copyright: © 2006 |Pages: 28
DOI: 10.4018/jthi.2006010105
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Abstract

Locative inversion verbs seem to share the same argument structure and grammatical function assignment (i.e., ) cross-linguistically. This article discusses the nature of argument-function linking in LFG and demonstrates how the Lexical Mapping Theory (LMT) rendered in Optimality-Theoretic (OT) terms, where argument-function linking is governed by universal violable constraints that consistently favor the unmarked function, accounts for locative inversion straightforwardly. Within this OT-LMT, locative inversion is due to a universal morphosyntactic constraint, and language variation in locative inversion is due to the difference in its relative ranking. This account also offers a potential explanation for the markedness of the locative inversion construction.

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