Russian Linguistics

, Volume 41, Issue 2, pp 151–175 | Cite as

Nam ne pisalos’ i mečtalos’: alternating dative reflexive constructions revisited

  • Katia Paykin
  • Marleen Van PeteghemEmail author


Our study deals with the dative reflexive construction identified through a double alternation: a nominative vs. dative marking of the subject and a non-reflexive vs. reflexive form of the verb, as in ja ne rabotaju ‘I do not work’ vs. mne ne rabotaetsja ‘I do not feel like working’. We argue that this construction subsumes two subtypes: subtype 1, taking one-argument verbs such as rabotat’ ‘work’, and subtype 2, occurring with two-argument verbs such as dumat’ ‘think’. In both subtypes, the shift from nominative to dative goes hand in hand with a decrease in subject agentivity. We show that the properties usually associated with subtype 1 and extended by various authors to the dative reflexive construction, such as modal reading, or the necessary presence of an adverbial or a negation, are not defining for the construction as a whole, nor for subtype 1. These properties merely facilitate the decrease in subject agentivity entailed by the nominative to dative shift, and the observed differences between the two subtypes are due to the initial semantic role of the subject, generally an agent in subtype 1 and an experiencer in subtype 2.


Dative Subject Argument Structure Semantic Role Modal Reading Modal Interpretation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Нам не писалось и мечталось: еще раз o дательных возвратных конструкциях с двойным чередованием


Работа посвящена ‘дательной возвратной конструкции’, фиксированной двойным чередованием: именительный падеж сменяется дательным относительно субъекта и невозвратная форма глагола—возвратной формой, как в выражениях Я не работаю и Мне не работается. Мы утверждаем, что эта конструкция имеет два подтипа: подтип 1 предполагает непереходные глаголы такие как работать, а подтип 2—переходные глаголы такие как думать. В обоих подтипах переход от именительного падежа к дательному идет строго с уменьшением активности субъекта. Мы показываем, что характеристики, обычно ассоциируемые в литературе с подтипом 1 и распространяемые на другие дательные возвратные конструкции, а именно модальное прочтение, обязательное присутствие наречия (или словесной конструкции в роли наречия), а также отрицания, не определяют ни подтип 1, ни данную конструкцию в целом. Эти преобразования просто облегчают представление об уменьшении активности субъекта, вследствие перехода от именительного падежа к дательному. Разница между двумя подтипами обусловлена изменением семантической роли субъекта, являющимся активным агентом в именительной невозвратной конструкции подтипа 1 и агентом, подверженным воздействию, в конструкции подтипа 2.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.UMR 8163 ‘Savoirs, Textes, Langage’Lille UniversityLilleFrance
  2. 2.GLIMS – Ghent University Research Group on Linguistic Meaning & StructureGhent UniversityGhentBelgium

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