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Academic Paper


Title: Nonveridicality and Existential Polarity Wh-Phrases in Mandarin
Author: Zhiguo Xie
Email: click here to access email
Institution: Cornell University
Linguistic Field: Semantics
Subject Language: Chinese, Mandarin
Abstract: In this paper I first gave a more detailed description of the distribution of Mandarin Chinese EPWs than available in the literature. Then I examined two influential treatments of NPIs in the context of EPWs: von Fintel's Strawson Downward Entailment analysis and Giannakidou's Nonveridicality analysis. I showed that neither of them can capture all the relevant data. The Nonveridicality proposal does a better joh in that it only falls short of the sensitivity of EPWs to some aspect operators. Drawing on Klein et al (2000)'s analysis of Mandarin/L/Chinese aspect particles, I revised Giannakidou's Nonveridicality for aspectual/temporal operators to cover the 'problematic' data. If the analysis proposed in this paper is on the right track, it would provide cross-linguistic support to Giannakidou's Nonveridicality analysis of polarity items, which is flexible enough to account for crosslinguistic variation.
Type: Individual Paper
Status: Completed
Publication Info: Proceedings of CLS 43.


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