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Empirical Methods in Language Studies


Edited By Krzysztof Kosecki and Janusz Badio

«Empirical Methods in Language Studies» presents 22 papers employing a broad range of empirical methods in the analysis of various aspects of language and communication. The individual texts offer contributions to the description of conceptual strategies, syntax, semantics, non-verbal communication, language learning, discourse, and literature.
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No problem or no problems? Special problems raised by the reference to absence in the sequences no+N-Ø and no+N-s


Abstract: This paper enquires into the field of noun determination and focuses on the construction ‘No + Noun’, as occurs in the following excerpt:

(…) and the executive government of the United States,[…], will recognize and maintain the freedom of such persons and will do no act or acts to repress such persons, or any of them, in any efforts they may make for their actual freedom. (Lincoln’s Proclamation Act, 1862)

The existence of the two sequences, no act and no acts, raises the question of the specificity of noun determination in negative structures in English. Insofar as the two structures are used in the same sentence, it may be hypothesized that they convey differences in meaning. The aim thus is to examine examples in which the two constructions are grammatically allowed in this pattern, and to elucidate the process through which reference and meaning are construed. We will demonstrate through corpus-based study, led within the frame of the Theory of Enunciative Operations, that, although they seem to be interchangeable in some contexts, they are not synonymous.

We will address these issues via the examination of examples taken from corpora of contemporary written English, such as the COCA.

Keywords: Linguistic operation, negation, reference to absence, noun determination, tense, aspect, generic/specific, quality/quantity.


This paper shall address the issue of the sequence no + countable noun insofar as the countable noun following no can occur either in the...

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