Skip to main content

Grammaticalization and compounding in Thai and Chinese: A text-frequency approach

Buy Article:

$32.93 plus tax (Refund Policy)

Abstract:

This paper employs a usage-based, text-frequency approach, in addition to traditional structural and behavioral analysis, to demonstrate two facts in comparative Mainland Southeast Asian grammar. First, we show that while many functional morphemes in Mandarin Chinese and Standard Thai derive from similar lexical sources, and emerge in the context of functionally and syntactically analogous constructions, the outcome is not in fact identical. Morphemes functioning grammatically in Chinese tend to attain a more advanced degree of structural readjustment than their counterparts in Thai. In this sense, they become more, or more deeply, grammaticalized. Next, we demonstrate that while patterns of lexical compounding in Thai and Chinese also resemble one another in being apparently widespread and structurally analogous, compounding is in fact deeper in Chinese than in Thai, as measured by such factors as frequency of occurrence, analyzability to speakers, and semantic shift. It is argued that these facts are plausibly correlated.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1075/sl.31.1.05pos

Publication date: 2007-02-01

More about this publication?
  • International Journal sponsored by the Foundation "Foundations of Language"
  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
X
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more