Word Order Typology Revisited: the order between V and adverbial phrases in Modern Mandarin

May 4, 2020 | 10:30 AM

Peck Jeeyoung (Associate Professor, Hanyang University; HYI Visiting Scholar, 2019-20)
Chair/discussant: C.-T. James Huang (Professor of Linguistics, Harvard University)

In this talk, I will explore how the order of syntactic constituents, especially verb and its adverbial phrase, is constrained by Aspectual structure of event in Modern Mandarin. While canonical order of main sentential constituents has been shown as VO (Sun and Givón 1985) as opposed to OV (Li and Thompson 1974), the order between V and adverbial phrases, such as preverbal position which is typical of OV type like Korean (e.g. 大家都在操场上站着; 张三急急忙忙地走了) vs. postverbal position typical of VO type like English (e.g. 大家都站在操场上; 张三走得急急忙忙), has been one of phenomena leading to a remaining question why Modern Chinese exhibits a mixed word order (金立鑫, 于秀金 2012). Extending previous findings from Aspect Interface Hypothesis (Tenny 1994, Klipple 1991), Scalar analysis of the notion of telicity (Hay, Kennedy & Levin 1999), subeventual analysis (Pustejovsky 1991), syntactic analysis of resultatives (Huang 2006), I will demonstrate how each order of adverbial phrases and V makes reference to internal structure of event (namely, Aspect).