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3. That is, in events involving a prototypical agent, a prototypical patient, and a prototypical transitive verb. This deliberate methodological restriction does not prejudge the use, in many languages, of the very same pragmatic voice constructions — passive or inverse — with intransitive verbs. e. topicality) is re-framed vis-a-vis the active con­ struction. Non-promotional passives tend to apply to a wide range of clause-types, both transitive and intransitive (Givón, 1981). Likewise, the inverse in many languages can apply to intransitive clauses.

Langacker, R. 1987. Foundations of Cognitive Grammar, vol. I. Stanford: Stanford Uni­ versity Press. Li, C , ed. 1976. Subject and Topic. NY: Academic Press. Li, C , ed. 1977. Mechanisms of Syntactic Change. Austin: University of Texas Press. L. 1990. " InB. Fox & P. Hopper, eds. Voice Form and Function. TSL #27, Amsterdam: J. Benjamins (in press). , ed. 1992. The Pragmatics of Word Order Flexibility. TSL #22, Amster­ dam: J. Benjamins. , M. Hamaya & P. Jacobs. "Active, inverse and passive in Maasai" (in this volume).

While the median values for referential distance are significantly lower than the mean values, the mean persistence values, on the other hand, are relatively close to the median persistence values. To summarize, the mean and median persistence values for actives as opposed in inverse constructions indicate that inverse non-agents are more locally important than corresponding non-agents in direct/inverse clauses. The agents of inverse clauses are slightly less important, but still hold some degree of importance.

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Case, Scope, and Binding by M. Bittner


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