Home > Catalogue > Annali di Ca’ Foscari. Serie orientale > 53 | 2017 > Semantic Orientation of the Adverbs 就 jiù e 才 cái in Chinese Sentences Containing Quantifiers
cover
cover

Semantic Orientation of the Adverbs 就 jiù e 才 cái in Chinese Sentences Containing Quantifiers

Magda Abbiati    Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia    

VIEW PDF DOWNLOAD PDF

abstract

In modern Chinese 就 jiù and 才 cái take on a quite complex relation: sometimes they appear to be synonymous and sometimes appear to be antonymous. The diverse interpreting of the two adverbial operators in contexts where quantifiers are involved is accounted for by treating them as focus markers on the one hand, and as operators expressing speaker’s subjective view of quantity on the other hand. It is argued that, as focus markers, the two of them exhibit ‘bidirectional’ properties, and it is suggested that their being synonymous or antonymous depends on their forward or backward semantic orientation. It is also pointed out that, by virtue of their semantic features, sentences with 才 cái are not ambiguous even without context, while sentences with 就 jiù can be ambiguous and the speaker’s subjective view of quantity uncertain.

Accepted
March 14, 2017
Submitted
Nov. 17, 2016
Language
IT
Copyright: © 2017 Magda Abbiati. This is an open-access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction is permitted, provided that the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. The license allows for commercial use. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.