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Sentences of аlternative motivation in Russian and English

I.F. Ragosina
80,00 ₽

UDC (811.161.1+811.111):81`37       


Ragozina Inna F.,

Candidate of Philology, Associate Professor

Dubna State University



The present paper is devoted to the sentences of alternative motivation in Russian and English. They are constructions with the conjunctions а то, а не то, иначе and their English equivalents otherwise, or, or else. The direct object of the study is those structures in which there is a verb-predicate in the Subjunctive mood in the second clause. The following thesis has been proved: such structures contain a compressed unreal-conditional sentence so that they represent three-part formations: an indicative part, an unreal implicit condition represented by a conjunction and a non-indicative part expressing the result of the condition. Denotative-semantic criterion has helped to state that a semantic space of the sentences of alternative motivation consists of at least three individual meanings: proof by contradiction, causal explanation and teleological (purposive) explanation. The first two senses come from an unreal-conditional sentence and the third one is a specific one only for the sentences of alternative motivation. The formulas of interpretation allowing determining these senses have been developed; their surface indicators in both languages have been defined: markers of negation (explicit and implicit), the mode of appraisive forming of an indicative part, etc. The examples of the corpus have been borrowed from English literature of different epochs in comparison with their literary translation.

Keywords: sentence of alternative motivation, unreal-conditional sentence, proof by contradiction, causal explanation, teleological explanation.



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