Referentiality and incompletive reading in Mandarin
Keywords:referentiality, event completion, consumption verbs, incompletive reading, Mandarin,
AbstractAs an exception to Krifka’s (1989) famous generalization that a quantized incremental theme always induces an event-homomorphic completive reading, Singh (1991, 1998) observes that in Hindi only the quantized mass noun phrases as the incremental theme entails a completive reading, but unexpectedly quantized count nouns phrases can have an incompletive reading. She proposes that count nouns can introduce a partial thematic relation, whereas mass nouns introduce a total thematic relation. With new data in Mandarin, instead of the mass/count distinction, I argue that referentiality is the crucial factor because the non-culmination readings are only felicitous with the referential objects for consumption verbs in Mandarin.
Published by the LSA with permission of the author(s) under a CC BY 4.0 license.