Semantics and its interface with Syntax and Pragmatics
Incompleteness (feizizu), anchoring and focus in Chinese
This dissertation investigates a class of apparently heterogeneous incompleteness
phenomena (i.e. the inability of a clause to stand alone an independent utterance)
in Mandarin Chinese and aims for a uniform analysis by generalizing the mechanism of anchoring.
Only-concord in East Asian languages
In Vietnamese (and Mandarin, Cantonese), several particles that contribute an exclusive meaning
independently can co-occur (roughly: John only1 only2 beef only3 eat in English),
under which case a single focus reading is still available. I am interested in identifying
the syntactic and semantic functions of those particles respectively and also how they interact with each other.
It is surprising that same can take an as-complement just like scalar equatives
(e.g. Ann read the same book as Bill did vs. Ann read as long a book as Bill did).
Whereas a branch of literature argues that same indeed involves a comparative-like structure,
few pursues a parallel semantics between the two. I provide a possible version of such an analysis,
which has the further advantage of capturing the scope-taking nature of same.