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Tense and Aspect

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Chapter Summary

This chapter recapitulates some basic assumptions about the syntax-semantics interface in general and the management of event arguments of the verb in particular. It adopts a simple version of a Reichenbachian representation of tense and aspect. The system should adequately capture the basic observations about tense, aspect, and time management in free indirect discourse without aiming at a full treatment of the intricate tense/aspect phenomena in English or German. The chapter discusses the treatment of sentences in which the content itself forces a free indirect discourse interpretation. It considers interaction between reference time and speakers' perspective, and takes a closer look at free indirect discourse as a discourse phenomenon. The chapter discusses details in the formalization of tense/aspect which are distracting for the beginner, and points out issues that the present system has to leave open. It provides a summary of the assumptions.

Keywords: aspect; English; free indirect discourse interpretation; German; Reichenbachian representation; syntax-semantics interface; tense; time management



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