Teaching English through movies : ATEM journal
Online ISSN : 2433-1929
Print ISSN : 1342-9914
A Purpose of the Dative Alternation : An Observation From Lines in a Sitcom
Natsuki Matsui
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2007 Volume 12 Pages 13-23


The choice between the double object and dative constructions is determined to a great extent by information structure, as pointed out by Rappaport Hovav and Levin (2005). That is, the occurrence of dative alternation is largely due to "focus shift." This paper argues that it is not an entailment but an implicature whether "a transfer of possession" is completed successfully in the event denoted by the double object construction as is often claimed in the literature. We should shed more light on the information structure when these two constructions with dative verbs are introduced in classroom. The paper also suggests that using DVD is extremely useful for introducing such linguistics theory in a classroom since students can have three kinds of information: literal, auditory, and visual one. Especially, using lines in a sitcom as teaching aids helps students learn more effectively.

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© 2007 The Association for Teaching English through Movies
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