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Title: Pathways to adversity and speaker affectedness : on the emergence of unaccusative ‘give’ constructions in Chinese
Authors: Chen, WR
Yap, FH 
Keywords: 'give' constructions
Speaker affectedness marker
Unintentional causative
Issue Date: Jan-2018
Publisher: Mouton De Gruyter
Source: Linguistics, Jan. 2018, v. 56, no. 1, p. 19-68 How to cite?
Journal: Linguistics 
Abstract: In this paper, we examine the characteristics of unaccusative 'give' constructions in Chinese, and additionally identify the pathways for their emergence in some Chinese dialects, in particular Southern Min and Mandarin varieties. In this paper, the terms dialect and variety are sometimes used interchangeably, with the term variety being the more general term that can also include variations within dialects. We distinguish between Type 1 and Type 2 unaccusative 'give' constructions, the former involving reversible 'escape'-Type intransitive predicates, and the latter irreversible 'die'-Type intransitive predicates. Type 1 constructions are attested in many Chinese varieties, such as Mandarin, Min, Wu, Hui, Hakka and Cantonese, whereas Type 2 constructions are more rare and thus far are mainly attested in Southern Min and some Mandarin varieties. Two major pathways in the development of unaccusative 'give' constructions are identified in this paper, namely, the causative pathway and the passive-mediated pathway. Our analysis also traces how the unaccusative 'give' construction develops into a marker of adversity and speaker affectedness. The findings of this study have implications for understanding the relationship between changes in valence (i.e., the number of core arguments that are profiled in a given construction) and speaker's subjective stance.
ISSN: 0024-3949
DOI: 10.1515/ling-2017-0038
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