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Morphologische Differenzierung: Schubkraft oder Mitnahmeeffekt?


Livio Gaeta



Morphological differentiation is defined as the development of morphological variants which can be inferred by the speakers to shape the passage to a new, different category. In particular, the paper will focus on the particular change of the demonstrative or relative pronoun in German which happened to develop morphological variants with respect to the article. The variants can be taken to aim at easing the process of identification of the new category portraying a classical instance of push chain insofar as the change is driven by the development of a different function. Accordingly, they reflect an active Principle of Maximal Differentiation helping the speakers detect the units belonging to the new categories from the others.


Keywords: morphology • language change • grammaticalization

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