This book contains a selection of the papers given at an international conference at the University of Konstanz (Germany) in 1991. All contributions relate to the assumption that lexical knowledge plays a central role in the organization of language, inasmuch as the components or modules of grammar come together and interact in the lexicon. Originating in various traditions of linguistic thought, however, the individual papers reflect differing interests and are based upon different conceptions of the lexicon, its status and interfaces. There is the position of current generative linguistics, which aims at accounting for structural properties of the lexicon within syntactic theory. There is also the perspective of model-theoretical semantics, where borderline phenomena between lexical semantics and the semantics of sentence and text receive particular attention. Still another group of papers directly discusses problems of lexical semantics, focussing on representational and conceptual aspects of word meanings. The notion of a two-level semantics as well as cross-linguistic analyses are characteristic of these contributions.
The book closes with a comparative and historical study of lexical evolution.
1. Introduction; 2. I. Syntactic aspects of lexical variation; 3. Lexical and nonlexical noun incorporation (by Baker, Mark C.); 4. Extraction, lexical variation, and the theory of Barriers (by Muller, Gereon); 5. Lexical decomposition in syntax (by Stechow, Arnim von); 6. II. Model-theoretical approaches to text semantics; 7. The epsilon operator and E-type pronouns (by Egli, Urs); 8. Tense and the logic of change (by Muskens, Reinhard); 9. The understanding and interpretation of text (by Ranta, Aarne); 10. III. Lexical meanings and concepts; 11. Describing verbs of motion in prolog (by Mayo, Bruce); 12. Partir c'est quitter un peu: A two-level approach to polysemy (by Pause, Peter E.); 13. Polysemy in a two-level-semantics (by Schwarze, Christoph); 14. Lexical and conceptual structures in expressions for movement and space: with reference to Japanese, Korean, Thai, and Indonesian as compared to English and German (by Wienold, Gotz); 15. IV. The historical dimension; 16. A contrastive study of vocabulary growth in different languages: French, English, Chinese, and Japanese (by Miyajima, Tatsuo); 17. Names index; 18. Topical index