Productivity in English Word-formation

An approach to N+N compounding

by Jesus Fernandez-Dominguéz (Author)
©2009 Monographs XII, 194 Pages


This book is a contribution to the study of morphological productivity, that is, the property of word-formation processes whereby new words are created to satisfy a naming need. It presents an up-to-date picture of this phenomenon, characterising its major attributes and addressing neighbouring theoretical concepts like availability, profitability or lexicalisation. Links are also established between those notions and N+N compounding, a word-formation process regarded as very productive but traditionally overlooked in studies of this type. Unlike other productivity surveys, mostly directed at affixation, a corpus of N+N compounds is here compiled to which the mainstream models of productivity are applied. This allows to detect the pros and cons of those proposals and to propose a model of productivity. Two measures, Indicator of Profitability (π) and Trend of Profitability (Π), are introduced which can be applied across word-formation processes and are able to compute their productivity based on semantic categories.


XII, 194
ISBN (Softcover)
Speech Morphology Semantics Sprachwissenschaft
Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Oxford, Wien, 2009. XII, 194 pp.

Biographical notes

Jesus Fernandez-Dominguéz (Author)

The Author: Jesús Fernández-Domínguez graduated in English Philology from the University of Jaén in 2004 and, since then, has studied English word-formation, with special attention to morphological productivity. He completed his doctoral thesis in 2008 with a European degree and is currently involved in a project on terminology at the University of Jaén.


Title: Productivity in English Word-formation