Article published in:Source-Goal (a)symmetries across languages
Edited by Anetta Kopecka and Marine Vuillermet
[Studies in Language 45:1] 2021
► pp. 109–129
Source-Goal (a)symmetry in Romanian
According to Talmy (2000), a motion event has four conceptual components: Figure, Motion, Path and one or more Grounds. Path can be further decomposed into Source, Medium and Goal (or: departure, passing and arrival). In many languages, intuitive pairs of motion events such as come/go seem to indicate that Source and Goal are equally able to build the image of the Path. However, numerous studies have pointed to an asymmetry in favor of Goal in motion descriptions. Using the corpus elicited during the Trajectoire project, this paper explores Source-Goal asymmetries in Romanian; this concerns adposition inventories (which are symmetrical for Source and Goal), adposition-verb combinations, and the attention payed by speakers to Source viz. Goal-oriented motion. The paper postulates possible semantic causes of Source-Goal asymmetry not identified in previous literature, such as the bounded nature of the Ground, and motion being associated with a particular human activity.
Keywords: Source-Goal asymmetry, Romanian, motion, boundary crossing, adposition
Published online: 21 December 2020
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