Configurational constraints on non-eventive nominalizations in Spanish

Matías Jaque Hidalgo, Josefa Martín García

Abstract


This paper examines the structural and semantics properties of non-eventive nominalizations in Spanish. By applying the decomposition of verbs developed by Ramchand (2008), we identify several configurational constraints in the formation and interpretation of nominalizations. We propose that the notion of ‘result’ actually covers different structures, and that a distinction between objects and states is needed. Then, we observe that predicates that have ProcP and ResP can yield both eventive nominalizations and stative nominalizations, whereas those predicates that have ProcP and an internal argument in its complement position can give rise both to eventive nominalizations and to object nominalizations. An important generalization arises also from the position of internal arguments. Those internal arguments that occupy a specifier position can never be taken as the meaning of a given nominalization. Therefore, we arrive at the conclusion that a nominalization can take an eventive projection and whatever is in its complement position (either an internal argument or a new subeventive projection) but cannot lexicalize specifiers, which have to be independently spelt out.

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