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Auteur: Tijana ASIC

Temporal relations between negated predicates: a case of Serbian

Abstract/Résumé: Temporal relations between negated predicates: a case of Serbian It has been largely acknowledged in semantics that negative sentences do not describe eventualities but denote facts to which a reference point in time normally cannot be assigned (Kamp & Reyle, 1993, Asher, 1993). However, it has been shown that in French, when a negated verb is in the passé simple, it can have a temporal reference and allow a temporal progression, thanks to the process of aspectual coercion: (Saussure, 1998, de Swart & Molendijk, 1999). In Serbian, the aspectual information is given via the morphological process of derivation and we have perfective and imperfective verbs (Asic, 2008). The aorist tense should be considered as tense operator that selects exclusively perfective verbs (Stanojevic and Asic, 2006). So, predicates in aorist are by default viewed as events. Negation does not change this: 5) Petar ga ne pogleda i ne pruzi mu ruku. Marko ustade, ljut. Peter did not look at him and did not give him a hand. Marko got up, angry. However it is possible to have the interpretation of a negated verb in aorist as a fact (never as a process : Negated perfective verbs in perfect are by default interpreted as facts and are typically used for elaboration: 6) Ljut sam. Petar me nije pozdravio i nije mi pruzio ruku. I am angry. Peter did not greet me at me and did not give me a hand. However, this can be pragmatically changed if, between the imaginary affirmative counterparts of the negated verbs, there is temporal ordering (imposed by causal relation or typical behaviour, see also Moeschler, 2009): 7) Dusan nije ustao iz kreveta, nije ukljucio kompjuter i nije mu poslao poruku. Dusan is not got from bed is not turn on computer and is not him sent message Dusan did not get up from his bed, did not turn on the computer and did not send a message to him. . References: Asher, N., (1993). Reference to Abstract Objects in Discourse. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrech Asic T, (2008), Espace, temps, preposition, Droz, Geneve. Kamp H & Reyle U. (1993), From Discourse to the Lexicon. Kluwer Academic Publishers. Moeschler, J. (2009), Causalité et argumentation : l’exemple de parce que, NCLF 29, Universite de Geneve, 117-148. Saussure L, de (1998) Le temps dans les énoncés négatifs in Moeschler J. et al., Le temps des événements, Paris : Kimé, 271-290 Stanojević V. i Ašić T, (2006), Semantika i pragmatika glagolskih vremena u francuskom jeziku, FILUM, Kragujevac Swart, H. de and Molendijk, A.(1999) Negation and the Temporal Structure of Narrative Discourse, Journal of Semantics 16, pp. 1-42.