This is a preprint

In Chinese VO (verb-object) phrases, 2+1 (disyllabic + monosyllabic) is ill formed when other length patterns are available, such as 2+1 *种植蒜 zhongzhi suan vs. the well-formed 2+2种植大蒜 zhongzhi dasuan ‘plant garlic’. However, 2+1 VO is acceptable when alternative length patterns are unavailable, such as 节约水 jieyue shui ‘save water’ and 喜欢钱 xihuan qian ‘love money’. The conditional acceptance of 2+1 VO is known as the ‘last resort’ effect. However, the predicted judgment difference has not been demonstrated experimentally. In addition, it is unclear whether native speakers find the last resort 2+1 to be as good as 2+2. Moreover, it is unclear what other factors may affect native judgment. To address the questions, we conducted a judgment experiment. Our study shows that (i) 2+2 VO is ranked the best, (ii) 2+1 is ranked the worst when a better form is available, and (iii) the last resort 2+1 is ranked between (i) and (ii). The result (iii) indicates a persistent effect of prosody, even for the last resort 2+1. In addition, we found a collocation effect between V and O. Moreover, we found considerable variation among the subjects, in that some subjects consistently gave higher scores than others, and for some expressions, there is a high degree of disagreement among subjects, which suggests that personal perspectives may play a role.


汉语动宾短语(VO)的词长搭配中,2+1(双音节+单音节)的搭配通常不好,例如2+1 *“种植蒜”不如 2+2 “种植大蒜”好。但是如果没有其他搭配可选,2+1也可以接受,例如“节约水”、“喜欢钱”等。这种现象叫做“唯一选择”效果。不过,有的问题仍然有待探讨。比如,以上所说的两种接受度,能否通过实验加以证明?“唯一选择”的2+1的接受度,是否跟2+2的一样好? 除了词长的搭配以外,是否还有其他因素影响语句的接受度?针对这些问题,我们进行了VO的接受度实验。结果显示(i)2+2 VO的接受度最高;(ii)当有其他它搭配可选时,2+1 VO的接受度最低;(iii)当无其他它搭配可选时,“唯一选择”的2+1 VO的接受度在(i)与(ii)之间。结果(iii)表明,韵律对语句的接受度始终存在影响,即使“唯一选择”的2+1 VO也受其影响。我们还发现,动词与名词之间的搭配关系也有影响。还有,参与者之间也存在差异:(i)有的人打分大大高于平均水平、有的大大低于平均水平,(ii)有少数结构得分差异很大,有的人给的是满分、而有的人给的确是最低分,说明个人观点也可能影响对语句的判断。


Word-length preference Prosody Acceptability experiment Elastic words Last resort


Additional Information

Print ISSN
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.