[B-Greek] New book on Verbal Aspect

Michael Aubrey mga318 at yahoo.com
Sun Nov 2 23:38:48 EST 2008

I continue to wonder if Fanning fully understands Campbell discussion of non-temporal nature and in Campbell's new "basics" takes many pains to explain exactly what spacial meaning is. Spacial reference in the augment does not exclude time because its relatively universal (if not completely) that time is aways expressed through spacial metaphor. Why else do we "look forward to tomorrow" and "put the past behind us"? ***TEMPORALITY IS A SUBSET OF SPACIALITY*** (not yelling, just emphatic) and thus temporality in Greek is marked on the augment to the extent that the augment marks remoteness, whether logical, temporal or any other way you can use space as a metaphor in meaning - perhaps even physical, though I haven't tested that.

Go to the library and read the chapter on Aspect, Tense, and Moody in Language Typologies and Syntactic Description Volume 3, Second Edition,  edited by Timothy Shopen. Cambridge University Press, 2007. Do interlibrary loan if you have to.

Or my "pre-review" of Campbell's new book Basics of Verbal Aspect:

Or my series of posts on Porter and Aspect:

After writing this four or five times and thinking it every time I read any on Aspect, I think I'm starting to understand how Dr. Conrad feels about repeating himself.


Message: 8
Date: Mon, 27 Oct 2008 08:36:55 -0400
From: "House" <mark at househouse.us>
Subject: Re: [B-Greek] New book on Verbal Aspect
To: "B Greek" <b-greek at lists.ibiblio.org>
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Buist Fanning, who published a definitive study on aspect in the early 
nineties, reviewed Campbell's book (the publication of his 2006 Macquarie 
doctoral dissertation under Trevor Evans) for the June edition of JETS. 
While he finds it to be a "valuable monograph" with "helpful insights," the 
review focuses on its shortcomings, which include an inadequate explanation 
of the aspectual function of presents vs. aorists in verbs introducing 
speech, his conclusion (along with Porter) that tenses do not grammaticalize 
time, and his tendency to distort others' views while failing to address 
weaknesses in his own. Fanning finds some value in Campbell's reconstruction 
of the perfect/pluperfect as functioning to "encode imperfective aspect 
along with heightened proximity [perfect] or heightened remoteness 
[pluperfect]," but also finds that the definition produces "odd readings" in 
several NT texts, including the many instances of OIDA. He views Campbell's 
dismissal of the stative understanding of the perfect (against Fanning, 
McKay, and Porter) as cavalier, based on unsympathetic reading of how others 
have explained the functioning of transitive perfects. At the very least, 
Campbell's monograph demonstrates that the discussion of this relatively new 
field is far from over.

Mark House


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