Encyclopedia of Chinese Language and Linguistics

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Subject: Language and Linguistics

Editor-in-Chief: Rint SYBESMA, Leiden University

Associate Editors: Wolfgang BEHR University of Zürich, Yueguo GU Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Zev HANDEL University of Washington, C.-T. James HUANG Harvard University and James MYERS National Chung Cheng University

Early Release Version: content being added regularly, expected completion Fall 2016.

The Encyclopedia of Chinese Language and Linguistics offers a systematic and comprehensive overview of the languages of China and the different ways in which they are and have been studied. It provides authoritative treatment of all important aspects of the languages spoken in China, today and in the past, from many different angles, as well as the different linguistic traditions they have been investigated in.

More information: Brill.com

Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis

(3,051 words)

Author(s): James MYERS
Date: 2017-03-02

Scalar Implicature

(2,133 words)

Author(s): Yan JIANG
Scalar implicature (henceforth SI) is a notion developed in inferential pragmatics. Its derivation crucially relies on the existence of sets of…
Date: 2017-03-02

Script Reform (1940-2002): Context and Policies

(1,931 words)

Author(s): Yuming LI
1. Historical Background In 1913, right after the collapse of the Qīng dynasty, the Qièyīnzì 切音字 or National Alphabet Movement, which had started in 1892, led to the development of a set of 39 phonetic symbols derived from Chinese characters, meant to be the national standard to phoneticize Standard Chinese pronunciation. They were called
Date: 2017-03-02

Semantic Processing: Anaphora and Quantifier Scope

(5,028 words)

Author(s): Yu Xia WANG | Chin-Lung YANG
Both anaphors and quantifiers are ubiquitous in natural language and include variant expressions to serve various functions in sentences and discourse. Anaphors include the third person pronouns like
Date: 2017-03-02

Sentence Processing: Long Distance Dependencies

(3,181 words)

Author(s): Ming XIANG
To understand the architecture of human sentence comprehension, one needs empirical evidence to address at least two issues. First, what are the necessary linguistic representations built in real time in order for sentence comprehension to happen? And second, what are the control structures that impose processing operations and constraints on such representations? Filler-gap dependencies form an ideal testing ground for this investigation. Sentences as simple as Which movie do you think John will like? have attracted attention of both theoretical linguists and psycholinguists for decades, exactly because the non-local relation between the wh-element (e.g., which movie, the “filler”) and its original canonical position (e.g., the position after like, the “gap”) speaks to important questions about what kind of syntactic/semantic representation…
Date: 2017-03-02

Sentence Processing: Relative Clauses

(3,399 words)

Author(s): Charles LIN
1. Introduction The comprehension of relative clauses has been one of the best-studied topics in psycholinguistics. Several important properties of relative clauses have made them a favorable choice for studying sentence parsing. Relative clauses are subordinate structures that modify the head noun inside a noun phrase. This head noun is usually referred to as an extracted noun, or a filler. Inside a relative clause, there is a nominal element that holds…
Date: 2017-03-02

Sentence Processing: Resolving Garden-path Ambiguities

(3,239 words)

Author(s): Ming XIANG
1. Introduction During the process of sentence comprehension, an incremental parser constantly faces choice points at which there is more than one option for the current parse to continue. If a particular parsing decision turns out to be incorrec…
Date: 2017-03-02

Serial Verbs

(3,908 words)

Author(s): Walter BISANG
The phenomenon of serial verbs, verb serialization or serial verb constructions (SVCs) is not restricted to Sinitic languages, it is an areal phenomenon of East and mainland Southeast Asian languages (cf. Areal Typology; Bisang 1991, 1992) and it is also widely attested in the languages of West Africa (Déchaine 1993; Collins 1997), in Pidgins and Creoles (Muysken and Veenstra 1997:289–301), in Amazonia (Aikhenvald 1999), in Oceania (Crowley 2002; Brill and Ozanne-Rivière 2004), and in New Guinea…
Date: 2017-03-02