Nesset, Tore: Russian Conjugation Revisited

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A Cognitive Approach to Aspects of Russian Verb InflectionEver since Roman Jakobson published his celebrated paper "Russian Conjugation" fifty years ago, the study of verb stem alternations has been pivotal in Russian linguistics. This monograph reviews the literature on the topic and provides a detailed discussion of the distribution of the alternants and their motivation. An attempt is made to capture insights from both the Jakobsonian "one-stem system" and the traditional "two-stem system". The descriptive problems of Russian conjugation are approached from the perspective of Cognitive Grammar, and theoretical questions relating to the application of this framework to morphology are explored. In particular, it is argued that so-called radial categories play a central role in morphology, and that declarative models that place the burden of generalization on surface representations are to be preferred. Tore Nesset (born 1966) is associate professor of Russian linguistics at the University of Tromsø, Norway. He is the author of the monograph Russian Stress (1994), also published by Novus Press. Tromsø Studies in Linguistics 19.

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