LINGUIST List 7.78

Thu Jan 18 1996

Qs: Text, Chinese, Conditionals, Attitudes

Editor for this issue: T. Daniel Seely <>

We'd like to remind readers that the responses to queries are usually best posted to the individual asking the question. That individual is then strongly encouraged to post a summary to the list. This policy was instituted to help control the huge volume of mail on LINGUIST; so we would appreciate your cooperating with it whenever it seems appropriate.


  1. Michal Ephratt, Statements in text
  2. Paul Woods, Computational Semantics for Chinese
  3. ChangBong Lee, Conditionals
  4. Salvatore Attardo, Attitudes toward language

Message 1: Statements in text

Date: Thu, 18 Jan 1996 08:22:52 +0700
From: Michal Ephratt <RHLH702UVM.HAIFA.AC.IL>
Subject: Statements in text

A masters student of mine wishes to concentrate in her MA
thesis on the linguistic clues for discriminating between
subjective and objective statements in text.

We have searched literature, yet, we turn to the list
asking for more references concerning the topic.

I am willing to provide a summary for the list.

Many thanks

Michal Ephratt (Ph.D)
Dept. of Hebrew Linguistics
University of Haifa,
Haifa 31 905 ISRAEL

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Message 2: Computational Semantics for Chinese

Date: Thu, 18 Jan 1996 11:00:07 GMT
From: Paul Woods <>
Subject: Computational Semantics for Chinese
Does anyone have any information on computational semantics for Chinese. I
realise that this is a very general question, but I'm beginning a PhD and want
to cast out a very broad net. I'm interested, inter alia, in lexical
taxonomies, sense disambiguation, and Chinese corpora.
Thanks very much,
Paul Woods
Sheffield University.
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Message 3: Conditionals

Date: Thu, 18 Jan 1996 15:56:02 EST
From: ChangBong Lee <>
Subject: Conditionals
 While I was working on the analysis of conditionals in Korean,
 I have been puzzled by the following type of data.

 (1)(to her own older sister; against her bossy attitude)
 ne-ka enni-myen, cheyil-i-nya?
 you-NOM sister-if, best-be-Q
 `If you are my older sister, is it the best?' (literally)
 `If you are my older sister, does that mean you can do anything (to me)?'

 There is a wide consensus saying that conditionals are defined within
 the irrealis domain. The above example in Korean seems to challenge this
 consensus. Notice that the speaker knows the truth of the antecedent 
 at the moment of utterance. However, what the speaker implicates is 
 something like `I know the given fact in the antecedent, but I don't
 feel like accepting it as a fact at this moment of utterance facing
 your arrogant attitude.' I find that without carrying this attitude
 we can't use -myen to mark the propositionally identical antecedent.
 Thus, we have (2).

 (2)#ne-ka enni-myen, mence ha-eyaci
 you-NOM sister-if, first do-have to
 `If you are my older sister, you have to do it first.'
 In (2), we have to use -nikka, equivalent to English `because' 
 or `since'.

 Facing this fact, what I want to find out from you is how the 
 same context in (1) above is expressed in your languge. A couple
 of English-speaking informants I asked said that they cannot use
 IF-clause in English. What about in your language? The response
 to this question and any kind of response to this query will
 be greatly appreciated. 

 Please respond directly to me, and later I will post a summary.

 Thank you in advance.

 Chang-Bong Lee
 Dept. of Linguistics
 U. of Linguistics
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Message 4: Attitudes toward language

Date: Thu, 18 Jan 1996 14:15:52 EST
From: Salvatore Attardo <>
Subject: Attitudes toward language
Does anyone have a ready-made testing instrument designed to evaluate
students' attitudes towards language, e.g., dialects are good/bad,
some languages are better than others, it is wrong to split
infinitives, etc.

I would appreciate any pointers and will summarize if there is

Salvatore Attardo
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