Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 17 October 2018

Abstract and Keywords

“Force dynamics” is a schematic system that pertains to the linguistic representation of force interactions and causal relations occurring between certain entities within the structured situation. It was first defined by Leonard Talmy as a fundamental semantic category in the realm of physical force and is viewed in particular as a generalization over the linguistic notion of “causative.” Metaphorical transfers subsequently generalize force-dynamic conceptions to the domains of internal psychological relationships and social interactions. As such, for instance, the system of English modals is analyzed in force-dynamic terms before it is shown how force dynamics also partially structures discourse and argumentation. This article summarizes findings of some studies engendered by the notion of force dynamics, including one that incorporated force dynamics in conceptual semantics, and others dealing with modal verbs in cognitive linguistics. It also discusses how comparable notions such as energy transfer can be usefully employed in the definition of grammatical categories such as “subject” and “object” and in the analysis of syntactic structure.

Keywords: Leonard Talmy, force dynamics, semantics, modal verbs, cognitive linguistics, energy transfer, syntactic structure, causal relations, causative, grammatical categories

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.