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A cognitive-functional approach to watch as a verb of perception

Chrispin, Lucy and Fontaine, Lise ORCID: 2023. A cognitive-functional approach to watch as a verb of perception. Gentens, Caroline, Ghesquière, Lobke, McGregor, William B. and Van linden, An, eds. Reconnecting Form and Meaning, John Benjamins, pp. 209-236. (10.1075/slcs.230.08chr)

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This chapter investigates the semantic and lexico-grammatical profile of watch as an atypical verb of visual perception. Although watch is classified as a behavioural process within Systemic Functional Linguistics (Halliday 1994; Davidse 2017), it displays features which make it difficult to categorize. We investigate the particular features of watch (including Aktionsart and complement types) through a dataset extracted from COCA (Davies 2008–), in comparison with see as a more typical verb of visual perception. Our results show that watch emerges as an agentive durative transitive verb which typically takes a distinctive event complement. Its unique profile challenges attempts to classify it, providing an example of a verb which appears to be in a fringe “transition area” (Davidse 1999: 303).

Item Type: Book Section
Status: Published
Schools: English, Communication and Philosophy
Publisher: John Benjamins
ISBN: 9789027212993
Last Modified: 10 Jun 2023 01:59

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