Based on a functionalist approach, this paper analyzes the modalized expression pode ser as a complement-taking predicate which embeds a proposition (pode ser1) and as an independent structure (pode ser2), in contemporary written and spoken Brazilian Portuguese texts. We aim to identify degrees of (inter)subjectivity, revealing a process of (inter)subjectification (TRAUGOTT, 2010 among others). The analysis carried out in this paper is supported by parameters of (inter)subjectivity of modal elements (TRAUGOTT; DASHER, 2002) and by the notion of modality as a multifunctional category, serving not only to encodethe speaker’s attitude regarding the modalized content, but also as a pragmatic strategy, as a regulator of communicative situation. The exam reveals pode ser as a strongly demanded structure in interaction, a fairly requested set and also productive and useful for interpersonal relationships. The examination of semantic, discursive and morphosyntactic properties indicates a shift from syntax (pode ser1) to discourse (pode ser2), interpreted as a development of (inter)subjectification.
Modalization; Pode ser; (Inter)subjectification; Functionalism