City University of Hong Kong CLASS CLASS
Making Sense of Grammar
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asked Apr 26 in Questions about Chinese Grammar by Ariel (28,250 points) | 8 views

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Adverbials focus attention on processes and activities perse. The purpose of adverbials is to give detailed descriptive accounts of the specific way and manner in which the activities or processes are carried out or executed (Frawley, 1992), as in 他匆忙地赶到现场。‘Tā cōngmáng de gǎndào xiànchǎng’ (He hastily reached the scene (of an incident)) or they focus on ‘motivation’, ‘consciousness’ or ‘intention’ underlying the processes and activities themselves, as in 他认真地学习语法。‘Tā rènzhēn de xuéxí yǔfǎ’ (She studies grammar conscientiously.). Therefore, adverbials are process-oriented. The states delineated by adverbials start with and are concomitant with the actions named by the verbs. This accounts for the preverbal position of adverbials, which is required by the PTS. Consequently, we may say that it is the feature Process vs. Result that motivates the distribution of adverbials and complements in the Chinese language.

[1] Loar, J. K. (2011). Chinese syntactic grammar: functional and conceptual principles. New York: Peter Lang.
answered Apr 26 by Ariel (28,250 points)

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1,332 questions
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8,470 users