Volume 2, Issue 2
  • ISSN 1877-7031
  • E-ISSN: 1877-8798
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This study examines the variation between the active and the bei passive in Mandarin Chinese from a probabilistic perspective. The variables considered include discourse continuity factors and adversity. Two different models were built for the active-agentless passive variation and the active-agentive passive variation. Four factors were found to have significant effect: agent thematicity, patient thematicity, adversity, and referential distance. In contrast, the effect of topic persistence and local environment is not significant. The accuracy of prediction for the active-agentless passive variation is significantly higher than the accuracy for the active-agentive passive variation. Overall, the bei passive, either agentless or agentive, is more likely to be chosen over its active counterpart, if it is adversative, has a non-thematic agent, a thematic patient, and a shorter referential distance for the patient.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): adversity; bei passive; probability; thematicity; variation
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