ISSN: 1139-8736

1. Introduction

This paper presents the difference between a fairly common way of expressing destination in many languages, “Raquel pone azúcar en el café”, and a specific one that is also possible in Spanish, “Raquel le pone azúcar al café”. The main focus of this paper lays on the kind of mental representation that speakers of Spanish construe in order to conceptualize the destination or landmark of an action, and the basic cognitive mechanisms that come in play. We will focus on these two constructions that are used in Spanish to express movement of an object or trajectory towards a destination or landmark (Langacker 1987), and we will call them destination constructions.

The main idea we present here is that in the first construction “Raquel pone azúcar al café” the destination is conventional while in “Raquel le pone azúcar al café” the destination becomes the Recipient, and it is also personified as a participating agent—an active experiencer in the landmark (Langacker 1987). This is possible by blending the conventional destination construction with the conventional Indirect Object construction. The resulting construction increases the emotional involvement of an otherwise inanimate destination with the agent and is integrated as a participant in the scene.

Thus, in this paper section 2 presents the main "theoretical tenets" used in this analysis. Sections 3 and 4 yields a description of these constructions and focuses on the "interaction of two conceptual schemas": the Source Path Goal (SPG) I-schema or the Container I-schema with the Move X-schema. Section 5 discusses the "semantics of the landmarks" that take part in the construction and also addresses the importance of conceptual integration for that purpose, and finally, in section 6 the conclusions.

Volumen 23 (2006)
ISSN: 1139-8736