Presentation on theme: "Thematic Roles Sara sang the song. Agent Kim drank a coffee. Patient Sally gave Tom her pullover. Theme."— Presentation transcript:
Thematic Roles Sara sang the song. Agent Kim drank a coffee. Patient Sally gave Tom her pullover. Theme
Thematic Roles Susi gave her the bag. She likes candles. Experiencer They protected their heads with helmets. Instrument Megan prepared lunch for her grandmother. Beneficiary
Thematic Roles He donated $2000 to the orphanage. Recipient The computer is on the table. Location They went to the cinema. She handed the paper to her professor. Goal
She received a letter from her boyfriend. Source Thematic Roles
Linking Definition:The term linking refers to the relationship between thematic roles and grammatical relations. AgentRecipientTheme John gaveTomthe bottle. Subjectindirect objectdirect object
The theta hierachy In an unmarked declarative sentence, the highest ranked thematic role will be subject. Agent > instrument / experiencer > patient / theme > source / goal / location
Agens-Gefälle Intransitive verbs: -unergative verbs: take an agent subject -unaccusative verbs: take a patient subject A sentence can only be passivised if there is a difference between subject and object on the theta-hierachy. Peter schreibt Kurzgeschichten. Kurzgeschichten werden von Peter geschrieben.
Linking Grammatical relation Thematic roleCase SubjectAgentNominative Direct objectPatient / Theme Accusative Indirect objectBeneficiary / Recipient Dative (in ditransives)
Passive transformation 1) Demotion of the subject to an adjunct introduced by by / von 2) Promotion of the object (and adverbial NP) to subject status 3) Introduction of an auxiliary verb: English be or get / German (mostly) werden. (German also knows more marginal auxiliaries: bekommen, sein, bleiben, gehören.) e.g. The car ran over a dog.> A dog was/got run over by the car. Man verlieh dem Soldaten einen Orden. > Dem Soldaten wurde ein Orden verliehen. (alternatively: > Der Soldat bekam einen Orden verliehen.)
Semantic prerequisite for the passive: a patient! That means, the subject must have been affected by the relevant event, or in other terms subject and object must have different levels on the theta-hierarchy (Agensgefälle).
In German, a formal difference is made between VorgangspassivEr wurde (vom Blitz) getroffen. and ZustandspassivEr war (wie vom Blitz) getroffen.
Only English allows for passivization of imperatives: e.g. Dont get bitten by snakes! (German: *Werde nicht von Schlangen gebissen! > Lass dich nicht von Schlangen beißen!)
Only German allows for passivization of intransitives: e.g. In den Fluren wird nicht gerannt!(subjectless) (English: Running is not allowed in the corridors.)
German allows for dative case in subject position: e.g. Ihm wurde gedankt. (No oblique case in English: *Him was thanked. > He was thanked.)
This is due to the fact that in German, dative case is not restricted to the indirect object in ditransitives, but also occurs with certain verbs: e.g. Ihm wird vertraut. Ihr wird gratuliert. Ihnen wird geglaubt.