Article published in:Romance Languages and Linguistic Theory 2008: Selected papers from 'Going Romance' Groningen 2008
Edited by Reineke Bok-Bennema, Brigitte Kampers-Manhe and Bart Hollebrandse
[Romance Languages and Linguistic Theory 2] 2010
► pp. 171–194
The puzzle of subjunctive tenses
Building on previous findings on tense construals and on constraints on modal-temporal configurations, this paper presents a semantic analysis of subjunctive tenses in Spanish which departs from the defective-tense hypothesis. The subjunctive tense system is analysed in a parallel way to the indicative system, and the peculiarities of the imperfect subjunctive are shown to mirror those of the imperfect indicative. Key to the analysis is the notion of ‘fake past’, a tense anchored to an interval Tx distinct from the time of utterance, which can be either temporally or modally bound. The semantic contribution of subjunctive tenses is examined first in root contexts and subsequently in argument clauses. The possibility of temporal disharmony and its limits are interpreted on the basis of Sequence of Tense principles and of temporal restrictions on modal bases.
Published online: 24 November 2010
Cited by 4 other publications
Sánchez López, Cristina
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