The syntax of evaluative V-qilai constructions in Mandarin Chinese has received much attention in both traditional (Chao 1968, Lu 1980/1999, Liu 1998) and generative approach. The latter approach is most represented by Gao et al. (1993), Wang (2005), Shyu et al. (2013) and Wang (2015). Despite new perspectives being offered, there still remain problems worth considering with the previous analyses. We propose that in the pattern “NP+V-qilai+XP”, the V-qilai sequence is an adjunct and XP is the main predicate. Apart from the type of V-qilai which does not have an internal structure, we argue that the other instances of V-qilai serve as depictive secondary predicates in a broad sense. More specifically, under a taxonomy of participant-oriented adjuncts in Himmelmann & Schultze-Berndt (2005), the V-qilai adjunct functions on a par with circumstantial adjuncts or weak free adjuncts. We further classify those sentences with a V-qilai secondary predicate into four types, based on whether there is a thematic relation between the matrix subject and predicate in the clause and whether there is a null operator in the periphery of the V-qilai adjunct. The project should be one of the first analyses that treat the V-qilai adjunct as a secondary predicate and that identify the properties of tough constructions in V-qilai constructions. The results of this study will not only further our understanding of the syntax of V-qilai constructions in Mandarin Chinese, but will also be expected to reveal implications for the area of depictive secondary predicates in Universal Grammar.
|Effective start/end date||2017/08/01 → 2019/05/31|
- V-qilai construction
- secondary predicate
- tough construction
- null operator
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