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To paraphrase your example:
He is expected/required to speak at the benefit.

Any light?
stevo

On Mon, Jan 23, 2012 at 11:48 PM, Ian Spolarich <[log in to unmask]>wrote:

> While working on a conlang of mine in which there is no future or present
> and only a nonpast tense, I was considering all of the meanings a sentence
> such as sing.NPST.1sg could have--I sing, I will sing, I am singing, etc.
> At this point, I came across the construction "I am to sing." This is a
> curious construction, I think, and it appears occasionally in things like
> "he is to speak at the benefit," or something. So I was wondering, how do
> your conlangs handle this? I was thinking of using the imperative mood--but
> that wouldn't really work. Probably a helping verb would do the trick, as
> essentially what you say is "I have to sing" with a slightly different
> connotation.
>
> Cheers,
>
> -Ian
>
> Also--what is the technical term for this construction?
>