Carr, Alexander

Start date:
October 2018
Research Topic:
An Empirical Investigation into The Nature and Degree of Nominality
Research pathway:
Research Supervisor:
Lise Fontaine
Supervising school:
School of English, Communication & Philosophy,
Primary funding source:
ESRC Studentship

My proposed research focuses on the nature and degree of nominality. While it is widely accepted that nouns and verbs constitute two separate word classes, this distinction has been shown to be unsatisfactory due to variably applied criteria which inconsistently mix morphology, syntax and semantics. For example, one problem is that semantic distinctions such as event vs object are not reliable, e.g. the noun ‘fire’ behaves verbally, like a deverbal noun, but this meaning is not inherited from a verb. It can be said that the concept Grammatical Metaphor (GM) has provided some insight into the broad area of nominalization, however, it has been shown that GM does not account for all complex nominals. Therefore, this research proposes to determine empirically how the nature and degree of nominality can be evaluated, as well as evaluate the extent to which GM can account for the meanings of nominal expressions.