SVCs in disguise: the so-called “directional verb compounds” in Mandarin Chinese
Waltraud Paul
July 2021

The so-called directional verb compounds (cf. Li & Thompson 1981: 58) or directional constructions in Mandarin Chinese, ‘V1displacement V2direction lái (come)/ qù (go)’, e.g. bān chū lái ‘transport exit come’ = ‘bring out (towards the speaker)’ are not compounds, but genuine object sharing serial verb constructions in Collins’ (1997) sense. The different positions of the shared internal argument are derived by raising one, two or three verbs to v, each verb adjoining to v as closely as possible (tucking in à la Richards 1997), thus maintaining the relative order between the verbs (cf. Collins 2002). This analysis automatically predicts that the internal argument must follow the verb (sequence) bearing the aspectual suffix, a correlation left unexplained in previous works.
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/006079
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: Ms., Centre de recherches linguistiques sur l’Asie orientale, Paris
keywords: mandarin chinese, directional verb compounds, directional constructions, object sharing serial verb constructions, unaccusative verbs, definiteness effect, tucking in, semantics, morphology, syntax
previous versions: v1 [July 2021]
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