Sigrid Beck & Shin-Sook Kim

On Wh- and Operator Scope in KOREAN

Arbeitspapiere des SFB 340, Bericht Nr. 73 (1996), 43pp.
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This paper presents an analysis of the interaction of wh-phrases and negation in Korean. We observe that a wh-phrase must not be preceded by a negative polarity item. This is related to the observation that in German, a wh-phrase must not be preceded by negation or a negative quantifier. We sugest that both languages are sensitive to a restriction that prohibits LF movement across a negation, the Minimal Negative Structure Constraint MNSC, proposed in Beck (1995a). Since a negative polarity item must always be in the scope of a negation, the MNSC covers the Korean data as well as the German facts.
Our analysis has several interesting implications for LF structures in Korean. One is that negation cannot be interpreted in its S-structure position. Another concerns the semantic effect of scrambling. Contra Saito (1989; 1992), we argue that scrambling serves to identify intended relative scope, and is thus by no means vacuous. We propose that short scrambling is never reconstructed.
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