• Le 04 décembre 2018
    De 14:00 à 17:00
    Campus Tertre
    Bâtiment Censive, Salle du LLING, C228

  • Mardi 4 décembre 2018, 14h
    Responsable : Aurore Gonzalez (Harvard University) 

    Titre: On embedded Question-Answer pairs

    Résumé: In this talk, we investigate constructions that we call embedded question-answer pairs in American Sign Language (ASL) (1a) and in Korean (1b). These constructions are made of a polar question and an answer particle answering that question, and the same person has to produce the question as well as the answer.

    (1) a. [MEG LAUGHbrow−raise], [NOheadhake] ‘Meg was not laughing.’
    b. [Kwaynchanhun kyenghem-i-ess-nya] ha-myen [ani]-ta. 
        okay experience-copula-past-Q do-if no-decl
       ‘It was not a good experience.’

    We first show that these embedded question-answer pairs can only be uttered under certain discourse conditions: in particular, they are used to make explicit a sub-Question Under Discussion (QUD) or a super-QUD and answer it. We then claim that (1a) in ASL is a declarative clause with a silent copula taking an interrogative CP (the polar question) as its subject and an IP (the answer) as its complement (Caponigro & Davidson 2011). In Korean however, (1b) is a conditional clause: the polar question is embedded within the antecedent and the consequent provides the answer to that question. Finally, we present an interesting puzzle regarding the answering of these constructions: namely, the polarity of the answer has to contrast with the polarity of the question. We discuss a few recent approaches to answer particles, and to verum and polarity focus, and show that none of them can straightforwardly capture our puzzle.