Questions tagged [thematic-roles]

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Why "Location" but not "Theme"?

When I was reading "Semantics: A Coursebook" (2nd ed), I came across this semantic roles identifying exercise "Detroit is a big city. The answer key is that "Detroit" is ...
Nora's user avatar
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1 answer

Question about linguistic terms, semantic roles

Is there not a term that refers universally to "the thing that verbs"? The word isn't "subject" (in "It is eaten by me", the subject is a patient, I am the one "...
user31355's user avatar
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How to express "he died" as a state transition not as an action

Original post I've always had a problem with the construction "he died". It is in the active voice, implying that he actively did something. He didn't actively do anything, of course. He ...
SlowMagic's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers

What is the semantic term for the things that the single arguments of reflexive and reciprocal verbs stand for?

In my native English, the first argument in "Mary feeds her pigs" stands for an agent, and the second stands for a patient. But what about the arguments in reflexive and reciprocal clauses in single-...
James Grossmann's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer

Can adjectives assign thematic roles in English (or other languages)?

Example: The dog was very excited or he was a very excited dog Does excited assign the role of experiencer to dog in either case? Do adjectives assign them in other languages? Or would we say that ...
dylbro's user avatar
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3 votes
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Semantic arguments of nouns

Consider the following NPs: [1] an alcohol ban [2] a cotton shirt Various discussions in CGEL would seem to imply the following: P: alcohol expresses a semantic argument of the head noun ban in [...
linguisticturn's user avatar
10 votes
1 answer

Languages with nominalized verbs that specify the thematic relation of its possessor

In English, nominalized verbs have only one form regardless of the thematic relation of its possessor: The robot's destruction (of the city) terrified authorities. The robot's destruction (by the ...
Zachary's user avatar
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2 votes
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Are there any languages that distinguish the thematic roles of theme and patient?

Theme and Patient are often described as distinct thematic roles. My understanding is that Themes undergo an action but does not change their state, while Patients undergo an action and do change ...
Catahecassa's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer

What is the thematic role of "to the party" in this sentence?

Helen drove to the party I find in a book that it is a location, but I am thinking it is a goal, because there is no actual place called "party". In the other hand, the definition of the Goal is : ...
Dragon77's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers

What is the difference between 'actor' and 'subject' in systemic functional grammar?

What is the difference between 'actor' and 'subject' in systemic functional grammar? Sometimes in a functional grammar, 'actor' has a different meaning
user avatar
3 votes
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Semantic roles of "tell"

What is the semantic/thematic/theta role of the object in a sentence like "John told Mary to go home."? Is it EXPERIENCER? Or is that only for sentences like "Mary heard what John said."? Is it GOAL? ...
Moss's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers

Syntax-semantics interface

In books on generative syntax it is often said that LF itself becomes an input to the so-called syntax-semantics interface to satisfy some conditions (e.g. to get rid of uninterpretable values). But ...
syntaxfairy's user avatar
1 vote
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Is there a difference in the thematic roles of the italicized constituents of these two sentences?

i. Justin knitted Mary some outfits. ii. Justin knitted some outfits for Mary. Is there a difference in the thematic roles of the italicized constituents of these two sentences? They both look like ...
Hal's user avatar
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1 answer

Thematic roles adjunct

I am a little confused when it comes to giving a theta role to some of my sentences. I got: James got a ball yesterday. where James has the role as BENEFICIARY. Got is the main predicate. a ball is ...
mineralvatten's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer

Semantic roles in the sentence with ´have´

I would like to ask for help with the clarification of some semantic roles. I am not sure what semantic role may be assigned to SUBJECT in the sentences with ´to have´ I need to assign role in the ...
Lenka's user avatar
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3 votes
2 answers

What thematic roles are played by the subject of an intransitive verb?

I am not familiar with the concept of thematic roles, just what is on wikipedia. Here is what I have come up with. agent: The man runs patient: The man was tripped. experiencer: The man falls. My ...
Timothy Wofford's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer

Thematic roles in some languages

I have a question about semantic roles in Latin and Russian. Latin Quibusdam […] sudor erumpit. someone. DAT.PL sweat. NOM.SG come out.PRES.3SG. ‘Some people start sweating.’ ...
Alex B.'s user avatar
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6 votes
2 answers

What is a theta role?

What is a theta role? Is it the same as a thematic role? And what does it mean for a theta role to be undischarged/unsaturated? I came across these terms in a syntax paper. It seems like both ...
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