Edited By Nekane Celayeta Gil, Felipe Jiménez Berrio and Alberto de Lucas Vicente
Is the get passive construction totally synonymous with the become counterpart?
Abstract: The following paper represents a discussion of the discourse factors that affect the choice of two specific types of allosentence passive structures in language use. These passive sentences are referred to as get and become passives, laying especial emphasis on the pragmatic and cognitive difference among them. Our methodological approach tries to be as scientifically grounded, formally measured and rigorous as possible. Our study consists of a two-folded task. On the one hand, we attempt to deeply examine the syntactic and discursive reasons that justify the use of these passive variants in actual discourse. On the other hand, we try to gain insights on the present state of affairs interwoven in the world of syntax and discourse analysis. We aim to deeply examine the current state of affairs surrounding the world of discourse analysis taking into full account the cognitive principles at work in our mind when we decide to select one passive variant or another, a topic of considerable interest and relatively original. Our supporting evidence comes from the International Corpus of English in its British Component (henceforward ICE-GB). We count, tag and identify 4180 passive examples in spoken language and 6010 in written texts to provide a meaningful categorization and explanation of the stylistic and discursive features of get and become passives, as it is adduced by a great number of authors (Fleisher, 2004; Georgakopoulou, 2004; Huddleston & Pullum, 2002 and Stein, 1980). Finally, we bring to light some remarks stemming from the previous research...