THE SEMANTIC AND SYNTACTIC ANALYSIS OF FOCUS PARTICLES IN THAI
Tiyanuch Rusawang, Sugunya Ruangjaroon/ Srinakharinwirot University
This paper provides the first analysis of focus particles in Thai. Two types of focus particles are introduced: exclusives and additives (scalar and non-scalar additives). The interpretation of these particles invokes a set of alternatives that is relevant to a given context. All of the focus particles obey the adjacency requirement whereby these particles are always adjacent to the focus elements and no scope ambiguity is observed. However, Thai shows subject/object asymmetry with respect to focus marking in which the subject DP focus is only available through the existential construction. There is also asymmetry between wh-arguments and wh-adjuncts in focus intervention effects in Thai as proposed by Kim (2002, 2006). In wh-arguments, the constructions involve wh-clefts as proposed by Ruangjaroon (2005) while wh-adjuncts do not.