Volume 24, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0378-4177
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9978
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Although in written Japanese grammatical relations such as subject and object are marked by postpositional particles, in informal conversation they may occur without any particles. This paper examines the occurrence and non-occurrence of the direct object marker o in spontaneous informal conversation and clarifies that the choice of object marking is a device to facilitate selective focusing on information. Our study shows that zero-marking is the unmarked option for marking direct objects and o is used when the information indicated by the direct object NP is salient in the discourse or when cognitive processing requires some additonal effort.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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