[Lingtyp] Intensification and causation

Bastian Persohn persohn.linguistics at gmail.com
Sat Oct 16 10:02:25 UTC 2021

Dear Jeremy,

Are you aware of the link between causative morphology and intensification?
A discussion of this is found e.g. in
Kittilä, Seppo. 2009. Causative morphology as non-valency increasing devices. Folia Linguistica 43(1): 67–94. DOI: 10.1515/FLIN.2009.002 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1515/FLIN.2009.002>


> Am 16.10.2021 um 08:55 schrieb tangzhengda <tangzhengda at 126.com>:
> Dear colleagues,
> In a certain NW Chinese dialect the adjective phrase of 'Adj.-de-hen' (roughly taken to mean 'very Adj.') can only be used on condition that it take the role of a CAUSE, or a 'causing state', by which a NEGATIVE EFFECT is resulted. The Negative effect, as an 'event' that has never factually happen, can be encoded as another clause, an element of the same clause, or totally covertly implied.  For example,
>                              INTS as CAUSE       NEG EFFECT
>          这   鸡            瘦-得-很,               他  不    买
>         this chicken    thin-de-very,             he   NEG. buy.
>         (When buying chickens)         这   鸡            瘦-得-很。  
>                                                        this chicken    thin-de-very
>                                                        'The chicken is thin (therefore he cannot buy it/it fails to be worth...)'
>       (See a chicken roaming by, no intent to buy)     * 这   鸡            瘦-得-很
>                                                                                         this chicken    thin-de-very
>  My wonder is whether some correlation exists between the intensification of a property (like an AP magnified by the degree words) and the CAUSTION, esp. negative ones (in Barros 2003, positive cause plus a negative effect is one type of the negative caustion where the relata is termed as 'prevention/interference').  Perhaps English 'too...to...' could be such a construction to connect the state/property and an EVENT.  If yes, how is the correlation motivated and typologically attested?
> With best wishes,
> Jeremy
> --
> 唐正大
> 中国社会科学院语言研究所《中国语文》编辑部
> 北京市建国门内大街5号,100732
> Institute of Linguistics, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences,
> No.5 Jianguomennei Dajie, Beijing, China; 100732
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