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On Two Kinds of Negative Concord Items in Korean
Lyn Tieu and Jungmin Kang
466-473 (complete paper or proceedings contents)


Many researchers assume that negation-sensitive elements like amwu-N-to and etten-N-to in Korean are negative polarity items (NPIs) (cf. Sells & Kim, 2006; Kim, 1999; Lee, 1995). Given previous characterizations of the differences between NPIs and negative concord items (NCIs) (cf. Watanabe, 2004), this paper demonstrates that such a binary characterization of negation-sensitive elements is inadequate to capture the full range of negation-sensitive elements in Korean. First, amwu-N-to and etten-N-to are not fully consistent with either NPI or NCI characterizations; second, they differ from each other in a number of respects. This paper proposes that there are (at least) two kinds of NCIs in Korean, and moreover places the root of the differences between the two within their morphosyntactic features. Moreover, upon reanalysis, these items are observed to fall very much in line with NCIs in languages such as Serbo-Croatian.

Published in

Proceedings of the 31st West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics
edited by Robert E. Santana-LaBarge
Table of contents
Printed edition: $375.00