November 28, 2003

4:30pm, November 28, 2003
Conference room, 3rd floor, Building 10, College of Arts and Sciences, University of Tokyo Komaba campus
Chris Tancredi (University of Tokyo)
The Semantics of wh-mo in Japanese

This talk will present preliminary results of joint work in progress undertaken with Miyuki Yamashina. In this talk I will look at two constructions in which wh-expressions (e.g. dare, nani, dono-gakusei) are related long distance to an occurrence of the particle mo: relative clauses (Dare-ga kaita ronbun-mo omoshirokatta), and concessive clauses (Dare-ga ronbun-o kaitemo omoshirokatta). I will outline 7 empirical properties of these constructions that any analysis of the phenomenon will have to account for, including both the syntactic behavior of the constructions and the semantic interaction of wh-mo with quantifiers, adverbs and other occurrences of mo or ka. I will then briefly show that no analysis given in the literature can explain these properties. Finally, I will present an analysis that improves on all available analyses by accounting for 6 of the 7 properties, and will outline what is needed in order to make the analysis account for the 7th property as well.

Last modified: Wed Nov 12 18:04:27 JST 2003