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Contrasting English and Chinese

Project: Non-funded ProjectProjects


As an extension of the ESRC project Contrasting aspect and tense in English and Chinese (RES-000-22-0135), this project will be comparing and contrasting aspect-related grammatical categories across the two languages on the basis of four corpora of English and Chinese. The compositional nature of aspect is well recognised. Indeed, the effect of verbs and their objects on aspect has been intensively studied. Nevertheless, the potential contributions of other grammatical categories to aspect, such as negation, remain largely unexplored. As aspect is a frequent and important linguistic phenomenon, this research covers nearly the whole grammar in English and Chinese. The project will look for similarities and differences between the two languages and seek unexpected insights into the workings of the languages from the corpora used. In doing so, such issues will be explored as which grammatical categories are involved in the generation of aspect and which are not. Given that English and Chinese display many differences, in exploring this question with relation to English and Chinese the project will simultaneously establish a basis for the comparison of the two languages and provide a robust test for the account of aspect developed on this project.