This project investigates the alternative ways of encoding referential expressions in grammatical functions and the ways of building complex predicates out of elementary units. We first investigate the locative subject sentences. Based on facts including one-way correlation of locative subjects and predicate-internal PPs, impossible co-occurrence with the progressive zai marker as well as the difference between outer locatives and inner locatives, I argue that the movement analysis along with the preposition incorporation view is a more preferable analysis than the base-generation alternative. Moreover, this project also extends the preposition incorporation analysis to the transitive unaccusative sentences in Mandarin. I argue the unaccusative experiencer subject is based-generated as the complement of the PP that denotes the location/goal where certain events take place and have an adverse influence on. This view accommodates a number of properties observed in this construction including the absence of possession requirement, the rise of sentient-individual requirement, possible subject relativization, the lack of passivization, binding effects and ellipsis facts. Overall, this project aims to articulate and motivate the idea that these constructions which involve non-canonical argument placement are the result of preposition incorporation plus other independently motivated syntactic principles, without having to resort to explicit rules.
|Effective start/end date
|2017/08/01 → 2018/10/31
- preposition incorporation
- non-typical argument placement
- locative subjects
- transitive unaccusatives
- Mandarin Chinese
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