An analysis of negation-dependent times amwu-phrases in Korean, and its theoretical consequences

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In this thesis, I revisit the nature of a negation-dependent expression awmu- in Korean. The central claim is that amwu-s do not fall within one of the two well-established categories of Negative Polarity Item (NPI) and Negative Concord Item (NCI). Hence, the taxonomy of negation-dependent expressions needs to be expanded to include a new, third type. Furthermore, I argue that this third type of expression, as exemplified in Korean, calls for a different principle of grammar, which is syntactic in nature, to properly account for its distribution.

The thesis is organized as follows. In chapter 1, I introduce the taxonomy and theoretical background of negation-dependent expressions that have been discussed in the previous literature. Then, I review on-going discussions concerning the identity of amwu- in Korean. In particular, two competing perspectives on amwu- are examined: Negative Polarity Item (NPI) approaches to amwu- (Sohn 1994 & Sells & Kim 2006) and Negative Concord Item (NCI) approaches (Giannakidou 2000, 2006 & Yoon & Giannakidou 2016). I also introduce a puzzle: amwu-s cannot be licensed by its apparent licensor (i.e. sentential negation) in derived positions, which is not accounted for under the previous accounts of NPIs or NCIs and motivates the main proposal of the thesis.

In chapter 2, I propose that amwu- is a third category of negation-dependent expressions and amwu- and negation stand in a base-generated relationship of constituency. In particular, I show that the interplay between the constituency of amwu- and negation and constraints on syntactic movement explains why amwu- cannot be licensed in derived positions. This argument is further supported by the bound pronoun effect (cf. Grano &Lasnik 2018 for English) that seems to relax the locality constraint between the base position of amwu- and the surface position of sentential negation.

In Chapter 3, I examine predictions of an argument I put forth in chapter 2 that the features responsible for the occurrence of overt negation in Korean can be acquired by the relevant heads derivationally. Following Chomsky (1965)'s featural constraint on deletion, I argue that only inherent features, which are not acquired derivationally, are subject to the identity requirement on ellipsis. Thus, the identity condition on ellipsis under my proposal amounts to a requirement to select a feature from the lexicon that is identical to the one selected from the lexicon in the antecedent. I argue that the fact that amwu-s can be used as fragment answers, despite the polarity mismatch with the antecedent clause, receives a natural account as a consequence of the feature specification in the domain of ellipsis.

In Chapter 4, I investigate implications of the underlying constituency of amwu- and negation. In particular, I show paradigms of the extended version of Beck & Kim's intervention effect (1997) in constructions where a long-distance scrambled amwu-phrases interact with wh-phrases. I argue that long-distance scrambled phrase can participate in syntactic and semantic operations in its derived positions. This, in turn, challenges the view that long-distance scrambling in Korean should be relegated to PF.

In Chapter 5, I investigate the nominal structure of Korean based upon the Numeral Classifier constructions. In doing so, this chapter contributes to the proposed argument that NegP is an optional part of the extended nominal projection in Korean. In particular, I examine a variety of orderings of Numeral-Classifier constructions in Korean and how they are derived. The chapter also argues that elements within a nominal phrase in Korean are also constrained by Cyclic Linearization and Order Preservation (cf. Fox & Pesetsky 2003, 2005; Ko 2005, 2007; Simpson & Park 2019). This suggests the application domains of Cyclic Linearization are not only clausal domains (CP) but also nominal ones (DP), at least in Korean.