Predicting the use of BA construction in Mandarin Chinese discourse: A modeling study with two verbs

Research output: Chapter in book / Conference proceedingConference article published in proceeding or bookAcademic researchpeer-review

Abstract

2014 by Yao Yao. This paper investigates the use of BA construction in Mandarin Chinese discourse with two frequently-occurring Chinese verbs fang ("v. to put") and ná ("v. to take"). Previous literature suggests that the use of BA construction is influenced by a number of factors, includ-ing semantic meaning of the verb phrase and prominence and weight of the object NP. However, what is unclear is how these factors work together in conditioning word order variation (BA vs. SVO) in real context, especially regarding the effects of object NP prominence and weight and their interaction. In this study, we explore this issue by building corpus-based statistical models for predicting the use of BA con-struction in context. Our results show that for both verbs fang and ná, the use of BA construction is sensitive to the prominence (especially givenness) and weight of the object NP as well as structural parallelism, while no interaction effects were found. Furthermore, the weight effects are in opposite directions in the two models, raising new questions regarding the nature of heavy NP shift and revealing a great degree of cross-verb differences in word order variation.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 28th Pacific Asia Conference on Language, Information and Computation, PACLIC 2014
PublisherFaculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Chulalongkorn University
Pages561-567
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9786165518871
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014
Event28th Pacific Asia Conference on Language, Information and Computation, PACLIC 2014 - Cape Panwa Hotel, Phuket, Thailand
Duration: 12 Dec 201414 Dec 2014

Conference

Conference28th Pacific Asia Conference on Language, Information and Computation, PACLIC 2014
CountryThailand
CityPhuket
Period12/12/1414/12/14

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Computer Science (miscellaneous)

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