Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/11707/3616
Title: A Study of Right Dislocation in Cantonese
Authors: Cheung, Yam Leung
Keywords: Sino-Tibetan Languages
Chinese Languages
Cantonese
Issue Date: 1997
Publisher: The University of Hong Kong
Abstract: Right Dislocation (RD) refers to the phenomenon in which a sentence possesses a component standing to the right of what we normally take to be sentencefinal boundary. RD in Cantonese and English are typologically different. In English, the right-detached component is coreferential exclusively with a cataphoric pronoun in the sentence (Ross 1967), but in Cantonese, such a pronoun is usually lacking in the sentence. Analyses of English RD are inadequate for explaining Cantonese RD. A more detailed study of the grammatical aspects in Cantonese can help us gain better understanding of the nature of RD in natural language. Existing approaches to RD in both Chinese and English are largely based on the functional assumption that the right-detachment is an afterthought or conversational repair (Chao (1968); Tai & Hu (1991); Geluykens (1994)). However, the pragmatic analyses do not provide a systematic account of the syntactic dependency between the sentence and the detachment, e.g. the interaction between quantifiers and the co-occurrence restriction between verbs and wh-phrases. A syntactic explanation is therefore necessary to address the grammatical aspects of Cantonese RD. Among the possible syntactic representations of Cantonese RD, the leftward movement account can secure a more constrained and consistent grammar. Siu (1992) also approaches Cantonese RD using a leftward preposing rule and topicalization. However, the representation has not been systematically justified. Alternatively, I propose the Generalized Dislocation Adjunction (GDA), an instantiation of Move-a, to generate different types of RD in Cantonese. Apart from conditions on movement, GDA is further constrained by D(islocation)-Adjacency, focus distribution, and a negation constraint. Finally, it is noticed that the interpretation of RD in Cantonese requires reconstruction in the LF component. The reconstruction facts are shown to be consistent with the minimalist assumption that internal levels are probably not syntactically necessary levels.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/11707/3616
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