题目：Things and Stuff: where do we stand on the grammar of the mass/count distinction(东西和物质：可数性语法之我见)
主讲人：Gennaro Chierchia教授 （哈佛大学）
地点：Zoom Meeting ID: 939 4344 4167 Password: 059863
Abstract: Noun Phrases and the morphosyntax of the mass/count distinction display a great deal of variation. Language systems like English have been studied most extensively and show clear evidence of two classes of nouns, those that allow direct combination with numerals and those that don’t. As are languages that disallow direct combinations of numerals with any noun, namely generalized classifier languages (Mandarin, Japanese, etc.). Finally, there are languages that do allow free combination of numerals with any N, whether conceptually mass or count, like Nez Perce, Yudja, Indonesian, which have also been well documented at this point. This variation has sprouted many theories of the mass/count contrast where the link between the pre-linguistic/cognitive basis of the distinction and its grammatical manifestations is weakened to the point of disappearance: basically any ‘concept’ can have a mass or a count grammatical representation (cf. e.g. Chierchia 1998, Borer 2005, Rothstein 2010, Landman 2011, a.o.). I am going to argue against this relativistic position and in favor of a universalistic stance: All of the languages mentioned above retain essentially the same notion of countability. To use one of Chomsky’s favorite metaphors, if Martians were exposed to English, Mandarin and Nez Perce, they would conclude that speakers of all these languages count things the same way, modulo minor phonological differences.
摘要：名词词组及不可数/可数之分的形态句法表现呈现出诸多差异。以英语为代表的语言系统研究得最为深入，这类语言系统清楚地呈现出两类名词，一类能够直接与数词组合，另一类则不能。另一类语言，即量词语言（如现代汉语，日语等），不允许名词直接与数词组合。还有一类语言，不论名词在认知概念上为可数或不可数，都可以允许任何名词与数词自由组合，内兹珀斯语（Nez Perce）, 尤贾语（Yudja） 和印尼语都有这方面的完整记录。这些跨语言差异孕育了多种关于可数/不可数差异的理论。在这些理论中，基于前语言/认知基础的可数性差异及其语法表现之间的关联被弱化至消失：即基本上任何概念均可具备一个不可数或可数的语法形式（可参考 Chierchia 1998, Borer 2005, Rothstein 2010, Landman 2011等）。本讲座作者反对这一相对主义观点，而偏向普遍主义的观点：认为上述所有语言本质上具有相同的可数性概念。以乔姆斯基最喜欢的比喻作解，如果火星人置于英语、汉语和内兹珀斯语的环境中，他们会得出这样的结论：除了少量语音差异，这些语言的母语者均以同样的方式计数。
Professor Gennaro Chierchia
Gennaro Chierchia has been spending his intellectual life studying how meaning takes shape in human language. A common thread in his work is the idea/claim/speculation that a logic (a way of drawing inferences) spontaneously grows and latches on to the syntactic structures produced by our capacity for recursive computation. This ‘natural logic’ gives a special power to our ability to use language to communicate and refer, a power not found in other species. Some more specific recurring themes/obsessions are properties and predication (control/raising/de se attributions), Noun Phrase structure (quantified vs. ‘bare’ nominals, mass vs. count), anaphora and presuppositions, implicatures and polarity phenomena. He is also very interested in pursuing these topics by experimental means.
【主讲教授简介】 Gennaro Chierchia 教授致力于研究人类语言的语义，贯穿其研究的假说是：句法结构由递归运算产生，逻辑（一种推理方式）依托于与此并与之同步生成。该“自然逻辑”赋予人类区别与其他物种的特有的交流与指称能力。Chierchia教授的具体研究课题涵盖属性与述谓结构（控制/提升/涉己态度），名词词组结构（量化名词vs. 光杆名词，不可数vs. 可数），照应语及预设，隐涵及极性现象等。Chierchia教授对以实验手段探索上述课题同样抱有浓厚兴趣。
地点：Zoom Meeting ID: 939 4344 4167
Host: Department of Linguistics, Beijing Language and Culture University