S-Space Language Education Institute (언어교육원) Language Research (어학연구) Language Research (어학연구) Volume 37 Number 1/4 (2001)
Mixed Categories and Multiple Inheritance Hierarchies in English and Korean Gerundive Phrases
- Chan, Chun; Kim, Jong-Bok; Park, Byung-Soo; Peter, Sells
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 언어교육원
- 어학연구, Vol.37 No.4, pp. 763-797
- One of the main puzzles in English and Korean gerundive phrases (GPs) is that they display a mix of nominal and verbal properties. This has provided a challenge to syntactic analyses with a strict version of X-bar theory. Various approaches (cf. Lapointe 1993, Yoon 1996a & b, Kaiser 1998, Malouf 2000) have been proposed to solve this puzzle, but they all have ended up abandoning or modifying fundamental theory-neutral principles such as endocentricity, lexicalism, and null licensing (cf. Pullum 1991) with the introduction of otherwise unmotivated abstract elements or structures. This paper has shown that it is possible to analyze English and Korean VGPs in a way that maintains the lexical integrity principle (no syntactic rule refers to word-internal structure), captures endocentricity (the generalization that every phrase has a head), and avoids empty categories. This has been achieved through the framework of HPSG. HPSG is a sign-based grammar in which the basic unit of linguistic object sign is a structured complexes of linguistic information, represented by typed feature structure. The grammar of a language is based on the interactions of declarative constraints on types of signs. In capturing linguistic generalizations in a precise and concise manner, linguistic types are arranged into a multiple-inheritance hierarchy. The mechanism of multiple inheritance hierarchy allows a succinct way of encoding generalizations about English and Korean gerundive constructions. This system provides a clean, streamlined way of capturing the mixed properties of English and Korean gerundive phrases. It also has allowed to have a simpler grammar that can capture parametric differences between the two languages.