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Nominal Arguments and Language Variation$
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Li Julie Jiang

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780190084165

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190084165.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 18 October 2021

A Classifier Language with D

A Classifier Language with D

Nuosu Yi

(p.213) Chapter 4 A Classifier Language with D
Nominal Arguments and Language Variation

Li Julie Jiang

Oxford University Press

Chapter 4 analyzes argument formation in Nuosu Yi, a language that is typologically unusual in having classifiers as well as a definite determiner. Also unusual is the fact that its demonstratives do not combine directly with nouns but require the mediation of classifiers. Properties such as these are shown to challenge accounts of argument formation developed in Chapters 2 and 3. In particular, the discovery of a classifier language with an overt determiner may seem to tilt the balance in favor of the Universal DP Hypothesis and also disprove Chierchia’s (1998b) Nominal Mapping Hypothesis adopted in Chapters 2 and 3. However, this chapter argues that the opposite is the case. It proposes a modification of Chierchia’s (1998b) framework, which accounts for why classifier languages with overt Ds are possible but rare and also allows us to make further predictions about classifier languages.

Keywords:   Nuosu Yi, classifier languages, overt definite determiners, bare arguments, numerals, classifiers, kinds

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