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Title: Distinguishing classifiers and measure words: A mathematical perspective and implications
Authors: 何萬順
Contributors: 語言所
Keywords: Classifier;Measure word;Multiplication;Multiplicand;1;¬1
Date: 2012.11
Issue Date: 2013-11-11 15:35:47 (UTC+8)
Abstract: Based on the insight that a measure word (M) in [Num (Adj)-C/M N] is semantically substantive, while a classifier (C) is redundant and does not block modification or quantification to N (Her and Hsieh, 2010), this paper proposes a distinction of C/M from a mathematical perspective. Synthesizing the concepts of parceler (Landman, 2004), divider (Borer, 2005), and multiplicand (Au Yeung, 2005, 2007), I follow Her (2010) and contend that while C/M both function as a multiplicand mathematically, C's value is necessarily 1 and M's is not, thus :1. This offers a natural explanation to the semantic tests developed in Her and Hsieh (2010). Implications are discussed for these areas: typology of classifiers and classifier languages, correlations between numeral systems and the employment of C/M, the universal count/mass distinction at the lexical level, and first language acquisition of classifiers and numbers.
Relation: Lingua, 122, (14), 1668-1691
Data Type: article
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