AuthorLi, Jen-I Jelina, 1962-
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThis is a study of topicalization (OSV) and object preposing (SOV) in Mandarin Chinese. Whether topics in Mandarin are base-generated or derived by movement has been controversial. We provide a detailed discussion and show that they are derived by movement. Topicalization in Mandarin is generally assumed to be A'-movement. Based on Mahajan's (1990) criteria, we however find that it may be A or A'-movement for it exhibits reconstruction effects, lacks WCO effects and topics can bind anaphors. Yet we still argue that it is uniformly A'-movement based on the logophoric analysis of anaphor binding and the reconstruction effects. We explain the lack of WCO effects by adding the constraint "a trace v is a formal variable if the chain is triggered by a (+wh) / (+quant) feature" to Higginbotham' s (1983) Accessibility Condition. Topic traces are thus classified as A'-anaphors for topicalization is triggered by (+topic). With this feature-based definition, we admit a third type of position--A'-positions may be operator or non-operator positions, depending on the features they host. Topics in Mandarin are normally assumed to move to IP-adjunct position. We however suggest that they move to (Spec, CP) because: topicalization is triggered by the topic feature, the occurrence of an embedded topic depends on the verb that selects the embedded clause, and no topic is allowed after an adjunct complementizer. Object preposing in Mandarin is assumed to be movement to adjunct positions in some studies. We however find it movement to specifier positions because it is an A-movement triggered by the focus feature. We suggest that the preposed object lands on (Spec, ModalP) or (Spec, VP). We divide the preposed objects into (+C-focus) and (+focus) objects; (+C-focus) objects have emphatic markers or contrastive conjuncts but (+focus) objects do not. The focus features reside in Modal or V to trigger object preposing, with selectional restrictions; e.g., modals only select verbs with (+C-focus), which explains why objects in (Spec, VP) must have emphatic markers or contrastive conjuncts. Related phenomena such as clause-boundness of object preposing are also discussed.
Degree ProgramGraduate College