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Se-Insubordinate conditional constructions in Brazilian Portuguese: a constructional grammar diachronic account

Grant number: 20/02589-5
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): September 01, 2020
Effective date (End): February 28, 2022
Field of knowledge:Linguistics, Literature and Arts - Linguistics - Linguistic Theory and Analysis
Principal researcher:Flavia Bezerra de Menezes Hirata Vale
Grantee:Maria Carolina Coradini
Home Institution: Centro de Educação e Ciências Humanas (CECH). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


The phenomenon of insubordination is defined as the independent and conventionalized use of originally subordinate sentences (EVANS, 2007). These are cases like "If you knew how you make me suffer!" (Corpus do Portugues). When analyzing the development of insubordinate conditional constructions (CCIs) initiated by the conjunction if in diachrony, a change process was observed, which points to the specialization of these constructions in the pragmatic domain. It is noted that, as the constructions advance in a path of insubordination (EVANS, 2007), they start to present recurrent morphosyntactic and semantic-pragmatic features characteristic of other constructions. From the point of view of the constructional approach, which conceives the language as an interconnected network of different form-function pairings (GOLDBERG, 1995; 2005; HILPERT, 2013; TRAUGOTT; TROUSDALE, 2013; BARÐDAL et al., 2015), it is possible to consider that as constructions establish relationships with each other, diachronically or synchroically, they establish links which motivate their particular features. In view of this premise, it is proposed in this project to describe and analyze relations established between ICCs initiated by the conjunction se and other constructions, in Portuguese, from data collected in corpora, from the 16th to the 20th century. It is expected to systematize possible links established between these constructions, changes in the properties of schematicity, productivity and compositionality in the construction process and the relationship of these properties with the degree of insubordination of CCIs. Finally, it is intended to propose a network for this type of construction, according to the hierarchy of schematicity between them. (AU)

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