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Chinese Motion-Directional Construction: A Conceptual and Cognitive Analysis


This article proposes an analysis of the Motion-Directional Construction in Chinese in the Conceptual-Cognitive approach as outlined by Jackendoff and Langacker. This article first argues that the Motion-Directional Construction consists of conceptual subordination, expressing different mental spaces. Then, it examines the syntactic and semantic behaviors of the construction arguing that it is more like a constructional idiom. In particular, we discuss the case of pa ‘climb’ and generalize further that the motion verbs in Chinese typically express manners of movement. Within the Conceptual Semantics, we argue that a level of grammatical relation may not be necessary; it is the argument and conceptual structures that we need in the cognitive structure. Finally, we present the data and suggest the typological relevance of the Motion-Directional Construction.

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Understanding S-Selection

dissertation. Bruening, Benjamin. 2010. Ditransitive asymmetries and a theory of idiom formation. Linguistic Inquiry 41(4). 519-562. Chomsky, Noam. 1965. Aspects of the theory of syntax. Cambridge: MIT Press. Chomsky, Noam. 1977. On wh-movement. In Peter W. Culicover, Thomas Wasow & Adrian Akmajian (eds.) Formal syntax. 71-132. New York: Academic Press. Chomsky, Noam. 1981. Lectures on government and binding. Studies in Generative Grammar 9. Dordrecht: Foris. Chomsky, Noam. 1995. The minimalist program. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Chomsky, Noam. 2000. Minimalist

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Remarks on the Final-over-Final Condition: A View from Chinese Head-Final Structures

order . Oxford: Oxford University Press. Bruening, Benjamin. 2010. Ditransitive asymmetries and a theory of idiom formation. Linguistic Inquiry 41. 519–562. Chan, Hok-Shing Brian. 2013. Sentence-final particles, complementizers, antisymmetry, and the final-over-final constraint. In Theresa Biberauer and Michelle Sheehan (eds.), Theoretical approaches to disharmonic word order , 445–468. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Chomsky, Noam. 2001. Derivation by phase. In Michael Kenstowicz (ed.), Ken Hale: A life in language , 1–52. Cambridge, MA: MIT

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