Thematic Structure and Argument Structure: An Application of Lexical Mapping Theory for Korean

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Ryu, Su-Rin; Shin, Soo-Song

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서울대학교 언어교육원
어학연구, Vol.31 No.3, pp. 417-459
In the recent development of Lexical Functional Grammar it has been shown that various syntactic phenomena such as passive, applicative and causative constructions can be appropriately described by deriving them directly from the argument structures of the predicates. Thus, we might not need the f-structure, which connects the surface c-structure with the argument structure. The Lexical Mapping Theory achieves this task in this paper for the treatment of Korean syntax and semantics. We first have tried the correct thematic structures for Korean passivization, causativization and the so-called control sentences, and then have established to derive grammatical functions from the thematic roles with the feature combination of [±r,±o]. Thereby we have shown various morphological operations such as Theta-Incorporation, Predicate Incorporation etc. which can alter the thematic structures by adding, suppressing or binding the thematic roles or predicates between main and subordinates clauses. On the other hand the thematic structure serves as an input for the function-argument structure which is translated into the language of intensional logic for the semantic interpretation of sentences. We have argued that the thematic structure plays a very important role, because the logical treatment of the semantic structure can not reflect the correct meaning of natural languages. For instance, John loves Mary is translated into the language of intensional logic as loves.(j, m), which simply states the extensional relation between the entities of j and m. However, our treatment for this sentence shows that the entity j playing a thematic role of Agent stays in a love-relation with the entity m playing a thematic role of Theme. Besides, we have treated various scope problems of Korean nominal phrases, especially their de dicta and de re readings in the argument structures.
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Language Education Institute (언어교육원)Language Research (어학연구)Language Research (어학연구) Volume 31 Number 1/4 (1995)
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