Taiwan Journal of Linguistics

A Diamond Open Access Journal (free to authors and readers)
ISSN: 1729-4649 (print); 1994-2559 (online)

SOME NOTES ON THE TEMPORAL INTERPRETATION OF NOUN PHRASES IN MANDARIN

Wei-Cherng Sam Jheng/ National Tsing Hua University
In this paper, I present a set of Mandarin data showing that the temporal interpretation of noun phrases (TIN) can be independent of that of clauses (clausal tense). I propose a formal semantic analysis to capture three TIN properties in Mandarin. Specifically, I motivate a stage-based analysis (Quine 1960), arguing that each host-individual (x) is sliced into various temporal stages (x%). The independent TIN results from the fact that each temporal stage (x%) can be predicated of by different nominal predicates within the lifetime of the host-individual. This analysis is able to provide an elucidation of the phenomenon where noun phrases can be temporally anchored independent of clausal tenses. Along the same line, temporality-denoting expressions in Mandarin can be used to quantify over the stages of the host-individual, and specifically select a particular temporal stage for the computation of the independent TIN. This throws light on the puzzle of why the TIN is easily accessible when noun phrases are accompanied by overt temporal expressions in the form of adjectives or adverbials. Key words: tense, temporal stages, temporal interpretation, noun phrases

關於漢語名詞時制的ㄧ些註記

鄭偉成/ 國立清華大學
本文的主旨在於討論漢語名詞組可以有獨立於句子的時制,稱名詞時制。文中我先討論漢語名詞時制的三種現象,並且提出形式語言學的分析。我採取階段分析 (Quine 1960),主張漢語名詞組可視為一個主個體(host-individual),而該主個體是由許多空間階段(temporal stages)所組成。漢語名詞時制現象是由於每個空間階段可以被不同名詞謂語修飾,而修飾關係必須發生在主個體的生存時段(lifetime span)內。除此之外,本文主張漢語時制中指涉詞能夠量化空間階段,並且選取特定的時間階段做名詞的時制解讀,無須訴諸於句子時制。這樣的分析能夠解釋為什麼帶有時制指涉詞的名詞組能夠容易得到名詞時制的語意。 關鍵字: 時制、空間階段、時制解讀、名詞組