Volume 9, Issue 2
  • ISSN 2213-8706
  • E-ISSN: 2213-8714
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Refutatory -sentences possess several syntactic properties that are absent in their interrogative counterparts. First, they carry the assertive rather than interrogative force; second, they are mainly used to refute a claim made by another interlocutor. Given the fact that such a distinction is correlated with the position that ‘where’ occupies in sentence, I propose that when serves as an interrogative -phrase, it is nominal and consists of and an indefinite morpheme concerning location; in contrast, when is a refutatory marker, it is an adjunct, containing an additional negative operator that binds a location-associated variable encoded in the indefinite morpheme. The refutatory further has to move to the Spec of ForceP at LF to acquire the illocutionary force. This analysis not only accounts for the syntactic and pragmatic properties of the refutatory , but also supports the claim that Mandarin -arguments and -adjuncts are formed differently.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): refutatory force; rhetorical questions; unselective binding; wh-phrase
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