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Figurative and non-figurative motion in the expression of result in English


This paper investigates the role played by motion in the conceptualization of result in the English resultative and caused-motion constructions. We argue that there is a strong preference for the figurative use of caused motion to express a state change when the affected entity experiences a complete transformation. However, if the affected entity acquires a new property but retains its essence, an adjectival phrase is preferred. Another category encompasses figuratively exploited resultatives that formally employ the caused-motion construction, but semantically do not codify the same kind of change. The paper also discusses the motivating role of the metaphor A CHANGE OF STATE IS A CHANGE OF LOCATION to express result, and proposes the additional activity of other high-level metaphors and metonymies.

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