[Lingtyp] Intensification and causation
Pier Marco Bertinetto
piermarco.bertinetto at sns.it
Sat Oct 16 10:11:59 UTC 2021
The same change is occurring in Italian.
'Troppo' has the same negative overtone as Fr. 'trop', but for young people
it is also a frequently used intensifiers.
The transition is easy to analyze: 'troppo bello' =
'exceedingly/overwhelmingly beautiful' --> 'very beautiful'.
Il giorno sab 16 ott 2021 alle ore 11:56 Jesse P. Gates <stauskad at gmail.com>
> Dear Jeremy,
> Could you tell us the precise Chinese dialect that this construction
> occurs in? In many other Chinese dialects 'Adj.-de-hen' is simply an
> intensification construction, so it is interesting how this dialect that
> you speak of has constrained the meaning so specifically to a cause to
> negative effect meaning.
> Languages often have a choice between a negative intensifier and a
> positive one.
> I think in English 'too' often has negative overtones to it, but not
> In French, 'trop' is a negative intensifier and 'tres' is a positive one.
> But I have heard that this is changing a bit and young people on the
> streets use trop for some positive senses.
> When I first started studying Chinese it took me a while to understand
> that 太 did not intensify in a negative way, necessarily. For example, if I
> say in English, 'he's too fast', that usually means something negative
> (like I can't catch him or beat him in a race), it usually doesn't mean 'he
> is very fast' in a neutral way or 'he's so fast' in a positive way. But in
> Mandarin 他太快了 can be used for the meaning 'he is very fast', it can be used
> to get a neutral, or negative, or positive meaning.
> Best regards,
> *Jesse P. Gates, PhD*Nankai University, School of Literature 南开大学文学院
> On Sat, Oct 16, 2021 at 2:55 PM tangzhengda <tangzhengda at 126.com> wrote:
>> Dear colleagues,
>> In a certain NW Chinese dialect the adjective phrase of '*Adj.-de-hen*'
>> (roughly taken to mean '*very Adj*.') can only be used *on condition
>> that* it take the role of a CAUSE, or a 'causing state', by which a
>> NEGATIVE EFFECT is resulted. The Negative effect, as an 'event' that has
>> never factually happen, can be encoded as another clause, an element of the
>> same clause, or totally covertly implied. For example,
>> INTS as CAUSE NEG EFFECT
>> 这 鸡 瘦-得-很， 他 不 买
>> this chicken thin-de-very, he NEG. buy.
>> (When buying chickens) 这 鸡 瘦-得-很。
>> this chicken
>> 'The chicken is
>> thin (therefore he cannot buy it/it fails to be worth...)'
>> （See a chicken roaming by, no intent to buy） ** *这 鸡
>> this chicken thin-de-very
>> My wonder is whether some correlation exists between the intensification
>> of a property (like an AP magnified by the degree words) and the CAUSTION,
>> esp. negative ones (in Barros 2003, positive cause plus a negative effect
>> is one type of the negative caustion where the relata is termed as
>> 'prevention/interference'). Perhaps English 'too...to...' could be such a
>> construction to connect the state/property and an EVENT. If yes, how is
>> the correlation motivated and typologically attested?
>> With best wishes,
>> Institute of Linguistics, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences,
>> No.5 Jianguomennei Dajie, Beijing, China; 100732
>> Lingtyp mailing list
>> Lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org
> Lingtyp mailing list
> Lingtyp at listserv.linguistlist.org
|||| Pier Marco Bertinetto
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