Volume 6, Issue 1
  • ISSN 1877-7031
  • E-ISSN: 1877-8798
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The present study sets out to construct a semantic network for -kai in Chinese resultative verbs based on the framework of Principled Polysemy. Our analysis concerning the cognitive-pragmatic motivations for the meaning extensions of postverbal -kai pinpoints the significance of perspective-taking and real-world force dynamics in the conceptual structure of Chinese resultative verbs. With the aid of corpus data, we further demonstrate how pertinent textual cues help to disambiguate polysemous V-kai complex verbs and evoke metaphorical readings of the gestalt V–V constructions, hinting at the distributed and context-sensitive nature of the meaning construction of Chinese resultative verbs.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): meaning construction; meaning extension; polysemy; resultative verb; semantic network
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