Język angielski studia i nauczanie; Języki obce używanie
Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Śląskiego
M. Wysocka, B. Leszkiewicz (red.), "On language structure, acquisition and teaching : studies in honour of Janusz Arabski on the occasion of his 70th birthday" (S. 41-50). Katowice : Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Śląskiego.
Conceptualising messages in material processes, i.e. processes which express doing and causing (CRUSE, 2000; DIXON, 1991; DOWNING, LOCKE, 1995) presupposes the occurrence of certain participant roles such as:
AGENT: The spectators cheered.
AFFECTED: An avalanche buried the climbers.
EFFECTED: Mary made an omelette.
RECIPIENT: They gave the children some sweets.
BENEFICIARY: I’ll pour you some coffee.
The first of them, i.e. Agent, prototypically realized by a noun phrase denoting an animate entity seems crucial in defining the essence of congruent realizations of the processes in question. What actually is of interest of the author of the presentation are the situations where discourse is systematically deprived of agents. What this research focuses on is the constructions where the presence of the agent is precluded. The aim of this paper and the undertaken research is to juxtapose agentlessness with the phenomenon of information distribution in a simple sentence. The main objective is to observe the theme-rheme allocation in the situa-tion when the presence of the agent is precluded and the whole message contains information that is new, as if all in focus. Additionally, it is my intention to monitor word order shiftiness making an allowance for the typological
universals theory (GIVON, 1987; DOWNING and NOONAN, 1995).
Before I concentrate on the research proper, I find it necessary to present the framework for this study, which boils down to introducing the proposed understanding of the terms involved in the survey. Let me in the next section ponder over agentlessness and then devote some time to theme/rheme opposition with some
light thrown on the concept of focus with special insight into word order principles.