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Taro Kageyama

Research areas

lexical semantics, syntax, morphology, language typology with particular emphasis on Japanese and English

Taro Kageyama has been working extensively on the universality and language-particularity of the lexicon and lexical knowledge as reflected in morphology, syntax, semantics, and phonology. Starting from his 1977 dissertation Lexical Structures, which demonstrates that incorporation operates both in the lexicon and in syntax in the formation of compound verbs in Japanese, his research was primarily devoted to the syntactic aspects of word formation in the 1980s. The major outcomes of his earlier studies in Japanese word formation were integrated into his 1993 book Grammar and Word Formation (written in Japanese). After that, Kageyama’s interest has been shifted more to the semantic side of lexical matters, bringing forth several books written in Japanese in the 1990s: Verb Semantics (1996, written in Japanese; Chinese translation by Kang Yu and two other Chinese linguists published in Beijing in 2001) develops a coherent system of Lexical Conceptual Structure which differs from Jackendoff's in several signficant ways and provides a lucid and unified explication of the differences and similarities between English and Japanese transitivity alternations, perfective adjectives, and resultative constructions on the basis of different viewpoints or different values on boundedness in LCS; Word Formation and Conceptual Structure (co-authored with Yoko Yumoto) analyzes motion verbs, caused motion constructions, and the way-construction, presenting an alternative to Leonard Talmy’s lexicalization typology of motion verbs; Morphology and Semantics (1999, written in Japanese) is an introductory textbook illustrating the feasibility of Lexical Conceptual Structure and Qualia Structure as applied to various word formation processes in Japanese and English; and most recently, Japanese as a Non-bounded Language (2002) reveals the non-bounded nature of Japanese as contrasted with the strongly bounded nature of English in a diversity of syntactic, morphological, and cultural phenomena. He is currently working on the event structure and individual-level stativity (property description) reflected in various voice phenomena as well as in compounding and affixation, and on the interface between conceptual structure and syntactic structure manifested in the definiteness effects and lexical integrity in light verb constructions and indefinite object constructions.

Educational background

B.A. (English linguistics), Osaka University of Foreign Studies, 1971
M.A. (English linguistics), Osaka University of Foreign Studies, 1973
Ph.D. (linguistics), University of Southern California, 1977

Previous positions

1973—1974 Instructor, Kobe Gakuin University
1978—1987 Assistant and Associate Professor, Osaka
1987—present Professor, Kwansei Gakuin University


1980. Sanki Ichikawa Award (for the revised and published book-version of the dissertation Lexical Structures)
1994. The 22nd Kyosuke Kindaichi Memorial Award (for the book Grammar and Word Formation)
1999- Registered in Marqui's Who's Who in the World (New York: Marquis)

Academic activities

Editor of Gengo Kenkyu (Journal of the Linguistic Society of Japan); Board of Directors, The English Linguistic Society of Japan; Councilor, The Society of Japanese Grammar.
Previously on the e
ditorial board for Journal of East Asian Linguistics (Kluwer Academic Publishers); Journal of Japanese Linguistics (Indiana University).
Outside reviewer for Language, Linguistics, Lingua, English Linguistics, Natural Language & Linguistic Theory, Journal of Cognitive Science, Linguistic Inquiry, Journal of the Association of Teachers of Japanese, Japanese/Korean Linguistics, and other journals

Selected publications in English

Kageyama has published more than one hundred papers and about 20 books. Most of them, however, are written in Japanese. Below are shown only his major articles written in English. The complete list of his publications is available from /

Articles (written in English only)

To appear. "Japanese," in ” in Rochelle Lieber and Pavol Štekauer (eds.) The Oxford Handbook of Compounding.  Oxford University Press.
To appear.  "Explorations in the Conceptual Semantics of Mimetic Verbs," Proceedings of the Second Oxford-Kobe Seminar in Linguistics.
2006. "Property Description as a Voice Phenomenon" in Tasaku Tsunoda and Taro Kageyama (eds.) Voice and Grammatical Relations, 85-114. Amsterdam: John Benjamins
2004. "All the way Adjuncts and the Syntax-Conceptual Structure Interface," English Linguistics 21(2): 265-293. The English Linguistic Society of Japan.
2003. “Why English Motion Verbs Are Special,” Korean Journal of English Language and Linguistics 3/3, 341-373. Seoul: The Korean Association for the Study of English Language and Linguistics.
2003. “On the Role of the Event Argument in Passive, Middle, and Reflexive Constructions,” Proceedings of LP2002 (Linguistics and Phonetics 2002).
2003. “Conceptual Cloning: The Semantic Licensing of Adjuncts and Nonselected Arguments,” in Patricia Clancy (ed.) Japanese/Korean Linguistics 11, 20–33. Stanford: CSLI.
2002. “Peculiar Passives as Individual-Level Predicates” (co-authored with Hiroyuki Ura), Gengo Kenkyu 122, 181--199. Linguistic Society of Japan.
2002. “On the Role of the Event Argument in Voice Alternation,” Humanities Review 52/1, 79–96. Kwansei Gakuin University, Japan.
2002. “Agent Nominals and the Organization of the Lexicon,” Journal of British and American Literature 46/2, 198–224. Kwansei Gakuin University, Japan.
2001. “Word Plus: The Intersection of Words and Phrases,” in Jeroen van de Weijer and Tetsuo Nishihara (eds.) Issues in Japanese Phonology and Morphology, 245–276. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter
2001. “Polymorphism and Boundedness in Event/Entity Nominalizations,” Journal of Japanese Linguistics 17, 29--57. Indiana University.
1999. “Word Formation,” in Natsuko Tsujimura (ed.) The Handbook of Japanese Linguistics, 297–325. London: Blackwell Publishers,
1998. “Phrasal Compounds and Lexical Integrity,” (co-authored with Kyoko Kato) English Linguistics 15, 309–315. The English Linguistic Society of Japan.
1997. “Denominal Verbs and Relative Salience in Lexical Conceptual Structure,” in Taro Kageyama (ed.) Verb Semantics and Syntactic Structure, 45–96. Tokyo: Kurosio Publishers.
1993. “AGR in Old English To-infinitives,” Lingua 88, 91–128
1992. “Lexical Su- versus Dummy Su-: A Reply to Miyara,” Gengo Kenkyu 102, 165--174. The Linguistic Society of Japan.
1991. “Light Verb Constructions and the Syntax-Morphology Interface,” in Heizo Nakajima (ed.) Current English Linguistics in Japan, 169–203. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.
1989. “The Place of Morphology in the Grammar,” in G. Booij and J. van Marle (eds.) Yearbook of Morphology 2, 73–94. Dordrecht: Foris Publications.
1988. “Review Article on Mark Baker’s Incorporation: A Theory of Grammatical Function Changing,” English Linguistics 5, 295–312. The English Linguistic Society of Japan.
1988. “Word Formation in a Modular Theory of Grammar: Postsyntactic Compounds in
Japanese,” (co-authored with Masayoshi Shibatani) Language 64, 451–484. The Linguistic Society of America.
1985. “Configurationality and the Interpretation of Verbal Compounds,” English Linguistics 2, 1–20. The English Linguistic Society of Japan.
1982. “Word Formation in Japanese,” Lingua 57/2-4, 215–258.
1981. “The Role of Thematic Relations in the Spray Paint Hypallage,” Papers in Japanese Linguistics 7, 35–64
1978. “On Identifying Grammatical Relations,” Gengo Kenkyu 73, 43–61. The Linguistic Society of Japan.
1977. “Incorporation and Sino-Japanese Verbs.” Papers in Japanese Linguistics 5, 117–155.

Edited books (written in English)

2006. Tasaku Tsunoda and Taro Kageyama (eds.) Voice and Grammatical Relations: In Honor of Masayoshi Shibatani. Amsterdam: John Benjamins
1997. Verb Semantics and Syntactic Structure. Tokyo: Kurosio Publishers.

Textbooks (written in English)

2003. First Steps in English Linguistics (2nd edition, 2004). Co-authored with Brent de Chene, Junko Hibiya, and Donna Tatsuki. Tokyo: Kurosio Publishers.
1986. 10 Voyages in the Realms of Meaning. Co-authored with Th. R. Hoffman. Tokyo: Kurosio Publishers.

Invited talks at international conferences

Sept. 2007. "Agent Incorporation and Other Peculiar Morphological Operations Inducing Individual-Level Predications," The 6th Mediterrancean Morphology Meeting, Ithaca, Greece.

Sept. 2007. "The World of Events and the World of Things," 2007 Theoretical Linguistics Conference on Chinese and Japanese, Beijing University.

Sept. 2004. "The Semantics and Syntax of Mimetic Light Verb Constructions," The 2nd Oxford-Kobe Linguistics Seminar, International Symposium on the History and Structure of Japanese. Kobe Institute of St. Catherine's College, University of Oxford.

Oct. 2003. “Event Argument and Property Description: The Semantics of Voice Alternations in English and Japanese,” Rice University, Department of Linguistics.

Sept. 2003. “Semantic vs. Morphological Boundedness: Resultative and Motion Constructions in English and Japanese,” Harvard University, The Edwin O. Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies.

June 2003. “Property Description as a Voice Phenomenon: Stativity in Middle, Passive, and Reflexive Constructions,” The Korean Association for the Study of English Language and Linguistics (KASELL), Third International Conference. Seoul: Hanyang University.

Sept. 2002. “On the Role of the Event Argument in Passive, Middle, and Other Constructions.” Workshop: Verb Meaning and Syntactic Constructions, Linguistics and Phonetics 2002, Meikai University.

2001. “Boundedness in Semantics and Morphology: Parametric Differences between English and Japanese” The 11 th apanese/Korean Linguistics Conference, University of California, Santa Barbara.

Research grants from the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology

1998—2000 Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (C)(1)
2002—2005 Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (B)(1)