Haiyong Liu "The Effect of Animacy on Mandarin Chinese"
The WSU Humanities Center invites faculty, students, staff, and the community to a Brown Bag talk given by Haiyong Lui (Professor, CMLLC) on the topic of "The Effect of Animacy on Mandarin Chinese".
Abstract: The impact of animacy can be seen in every language, in various forms; for example, in English, only human(-like)s deserve gender-distinction (he/she), but not non-human or inanimate entities (it). Typologically, the Animacy Hierarchy (Silverstein 1976) determines many of the behavioral differences between animate and inanimate nouns, for example, in terms of definiteness and word order, etc. I will further argue that the adversity passive (i.e., I was beaten is ok, but I was loved sounds odd) in Chinese, the absence of pronounhood for Chinese inanimate nominals, and the lexical choice between ren and ren-men for ‘humans’ in Chinese are all influenced by the Animacy Hierarchy.
Please RSVP to this event for the zoom link.