Chapter published in:Current Issues in Syntactic Cartography: A crosslinguistic perspective
Edited by Fuzhen Si and Luigi Rizzi
[Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today 267] 2021
► pp. 183–216
Chapter 9Quantifictional binding without surface c-command in Mandarin
This article discusses quantificational binding without surface c-command in Mandarin Chinese. Jin (1998) pointed out that Chinese quantificational NPs (Q-NPs) headed by mei ‘every’ are capable of binding out of containers such as sentential subjects, relative clauses or adverbial clauses and there is a subject/object asymmetry with respect to such binding. This asymmetry, if correct, is reminiscent of the non-coreference rule on pronominal anaphora which also displays an effect of subject/object asymmetry (cf. Huang 1982 and Teng 1985) and would call for a unifying treatment of the two phenomena. However, contrary to Jin’s observation, this article shows that universal Q-NPs in object position may actually bind out of their containers just like universal Q-NP subjects, thus making it infeasible to define a common locality domain to which both quantificational binding and referential pronominal anaphora are sensitive. Instead, this article argues that quantificational binding is an LF phenomenon constrained by LF mechanisms. A minimum requirement for quantificational binding is that the pronoun bound by a given quantifier must be within the scope of that quantifier at LF. Though this minimum requirement in principle enables Q-NPs to have high scope, they are subject to other conditions such as the general Condition on Scope Interpretation, which prevents a Q-NP from taking scope over another one that c-commands it at surface structure. The interaction of the two conditions explains why in some cases Q-NPs may take high scope and bind a pronoun that they do not c-command but not in some other cases. Backward quantificational binding, on the other hand, is a result of the interaction of several independently motivated mechanisms, including the possibility of reconstruction at LF, the Chinese-specific non-coreference rule and Chomsky’s Leftness Condition.
- 2.The case of Chinese: Previous literature
- 3.A preliminary first attempt to account for QBWC in Chinese
- 4.Problems of the preliminary attempt
- 5.Scope requirement on quantificational binding
- 6.Scope ambiguity and quantificational binding
- 7.Weak crossover and the c-command requirement
- 8. Dou and the scope of universal NPs
- 9.Conclusions, implications and residues problems
Published online: 12 October 2021
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