Re: More MNCL5 Problems
|From:||Jeffrey Jones <jsjonesmiami@...>|
|Date:||Wednesday, January 2, 2008, 11:56|
On Mon, 31 Dec 2007 08:27:05 -0500, Jeffrey Jones
> 11. Embedded WH-Questions and Relative Clauses
> An embedded WH-question (and the normal variety of non-embedded WH-
> questions, for that matter) begins with an interrogative pronoun; this is
> either koi or a word form beginning with the k- morpheme. A relative clause
> begins with a relative pronoun, which begins with the y- morpheme. Often,
> this isn't a problem, due to the fairly free order of phrases and phrase
> components and because required possessors/objects precede their heads.
> Here are some examples (using non-embedded questions for simplicity).
> Koi hote tafo java? -- "How hot is your coffee?"
> Kanok ta vid'he? -- "What (thing) have you seen?"
> Kamak dok zan disek? -- "Whose mother told them that?"
> Kilko hauso cabi korek zo hundak? -- "What kind of house did the dog run to?"
> The problem occurs when the interrogative or relative pronoun would be
> contained within a subordinate clause. English pulls the pronoun (or the
> phrase containing the pronoun) out of the subordinate clause, as in "What
> do you want us to give you?" where "what" is really an object of "give",
> not "want" (Note: the English infinitive construction corresponds to an
> MNCL5 complement clause). I don't see this working for MNCL5. Possibly
> some kind of "such that" construction could be used, with perhaps a 3rd
> person pronoun remaining in place; I haven't figured out the other details
> yet. I wonder what other strategies might be used?
I've made a small amount of progress on this. I've learned that the relevent
term is "long-distance dependencies", and also that this problem is related to
I haven't developed any topic mechanism yet other than placing the topic
phrase at the beginning, so I guess this problem applies to topics too.
What I'm looking for is how different languages handle this. So far, all I've seen
English: relative/interrogative pronoun "moves" to the front, leaving a gap.
French: "dont" is used as a relativizer, with 3rd person pronouns left in place;
no embedded questions found
Japanese: no relative pronouns or relativizers; no embedded questions found
(possibly, they stay in place since that's what interrogative pronouns in non-
embedded questions do)
A few other languages seem to work like either French or English or both.