Definiteness in Korean

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dc.contributor.advisor Riddle, Elizabeth M. en_US Lee, Seonmi en_US 2011-06-03T19:28:06Z 2011-06-03T19:28:06Z 1997 en_US 1997
dc.identifier LD2489.Z68 1997 .L44 en_US
dc.description.abstract This study presents a pragmatic approach to the analysis of definiteness. The expression of definiteness in Korean is analyzed as controlled by the pragmatic motivation to differentiate nouns with respect to their topical relevance and importance.The primary claim of this study is that grammar utilizes formal marking systems not only for making semantic contrasts but also for producing pragmatic distinctions. As an illustration of this claim, the marking vs. lack of marking that determine pragmatic status in Korean is examined, and it is argued that the lack of marking indicates the relative lack of special significance of a given referent as a specific individual, while overt marking indicates the relatively higher significance of an intended referent as a specific individual.Definiteness is shown to be non-distinctive and non-categorical in nature, with five expressions of definiteness coding six degrees of definiteness in a definiteness continuum. This is illustrated in the following diagram:Definiteness ContinuumBare NP ---- com ---- etten ---- han ---- ku ---- Bare NPleastmostThe bare NP to the left comprises nonunique common nouns and the one to the right unique common nouns and proper nouns. In each case, the bare form is viewed as representing the referent in its most general use.It is also shown that definiteness and indefiniteness can coincide in the sense that semantically indefinite NPs can be marked formally as definite in certain contexts. This is explained motivated by the pragmatic need for upgrading the degree of definiteness in order to present it as a more prominent or salient entity. With cases in which both semantically definite referents and semantically indefinite referents are formally presented in the same bare NP form as crucial evidence, it is suggested that the realization and expression of definiteness is motivated only when pragmatic significance requires such a distinction. The study concludes that marking and lack of marking of definiteness in Korean does in fact signal the relative pragmatic importance of the referent in the development of the discourse. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship Department of English
dc.format.extent v, 230 leaves ; 28 cm. en_US
dc.source Virtual Press en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Korean language -- Grammar, Comparative -- English. en_US
dc.subject.lcsh English language -- Grammar, Comparative -- Korean. en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Definiteness (Linguistics) en_US
dc.title Definiteness in Korean en_US Thesis (Ph. D.) en_US
dc.identifier.cardcat-url en_US

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  • Doctoral Dissertations [3134]
    Doctoral dissertations submitted to the Graduate School by Ball State University doctoral candidates in partial fulfillment of degree requirements.

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