0

According to Kearns(2011), verbs like peer, gawk, spot, scan, sight, study, glare, eye, glance, observe, peep, stare, examine, glimpse, etc. can be categorized into "see" class, "watch" class, "look" class. I'm just wondering, if we finish the categorization, then what are the general meaning and argument structure (i.e., theta roles) of each class? Don't they have the same argument structure like SEE(x, y), WATCH(x,y), LOOK AT(x, y)?

1
  • 2
    They have different semantics, which might affect argument structure in some cases. Generally English sense verbs are distinguished by volitionality (e.g, hear vs listen) and agency (e.g, hear and listen vs sound). Watch adds persistence to volition, gawk adds social and/or physical awkwardness, etc. Sometimes these additional fillips add or modify arguments. – jlawler Nov 20 '20 at 18:45

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.