Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076

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Intervention effect in Korean wh-questions:
Indefinite and beyond
Young-Sik Choi *
Department of English Language and Literature, Soonchunhyang University, Asan,
Chungnam 336-745, South Korea
Received 15 March 2004; received in revised form 24 December 2006; accepted 7 January 2007
Available online 15 May 2007

Abstract
I claim that the intervention effect in Korean wh-questions can receive a natural account with the
proposed two ways of scope taking of in situ wh-words: in situ interpretation of indefinite wh-words via
unselective binding by the question morpheme versus movement of way ‘why’. Also on the basis of the
interesting contrast of the intervention effect in wh-questions with the two types of wh-words in various
constructions, for which Beck and Kim (Beck, S., Kim, S.-S., 1997. On wh- and operator scope in Korean.
Journal of East Asian Linguistics 6, 339–384) cannot offer a principled account, I claim that the intervention
effect is not a movement but scope phenomenon as opposed to them.
# 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Keywords: Indefinite; Question morpheme; Scope; Intervention; Restriction

1. Introduction
Various approaches have been made within syntactic theories for the analysis of in situ wh-word
scope taking. Among them are the LF wh-movement approach by Huang (1982), and the LF wh-insitu interpretation approach by Baker (1970), an idea which has been adopted within the minimalist
framework in the form of either unselective binding or absorption. However, a careful examination
of the nature of in situ wh-words in Korean, which is a typical wh-in-situ language, suggests two
ways of scope taking: in situ interpretation of indefinite wh-words via unselective binding by the
question morpheme, and movement of way ‘why’. It will be shown that scope taking of wh-words
along this way can offer a more satisfactory account for the intricate pattern of the intervention
effect in Korean wh-questions.
* Tel.: +82 41 530 1124; fax: +82 41 530 1491.
E-mail address: youngsic@sch.ac.kr.
0024-3841/$ – see front matter # 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
doi:10.1016/j.lingua.2007.01.001

2056

Y.-S. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076

Beck and Kim (1997) observes that wh-questions with a negative polarity item (NPI,
henceforth) followed by a wh-word in Korean exhibit the intervention effect while with a
reversed word order, the effect does not arise, as illustrated in (1) and (2) (also see Sells, 2001;
Sohn, 1995; Suh, 1990, for related discussions).1,2
(1)

a.

b.

c.

d.

(2)

a.

b.

c.

d.

*Amwuto nwukwu-lul chotayhaci an
hayss-ni?
anyone who-ACC invite
NOT did-QM
‘Who did no one invite?’
*Amwuto Mary-lul eti-se
mannaci an
hayss-ni?
anyone M-ACC where-at meet
NOT did-QM
‘Where did no one meet Mary?’
*Amwuto Mary-lul encey mannaci an
hayss-ni?
anyone M-ACC when meet
NOT did-QM
‘When did no one meet Mary?’
*Amwuto Mary-eytayhay ettehkey malhaci an
hayss-ni?
anyone M-about
how
talk
NOT did-QM
‘How was no one talking about Mary?’
Nwu-ka amwuto chotayhaci an
hayss-ni?
who-NOM anyone invite
NOT did-QM
‘Who invited no one?’
John-i eti-se
amwuto mannaci an
hayss-ni?
J-NOM where-at anyone meet
NOT did-QM
‘Where did John meet no one?’
John-i encey amwuto mannaci an hayss-ni?
J-NOM when anyone meet
NOT did-QM
‘When did John meet no one?’
John-i ettehkey Mary-eytayhay amwu-ekey-to malhaci an
hayss-ni?
J-NOM how
M-about
anyone-to
talk
NOT did-QM
‘How was John talking to no one about Mary?’

1
The intervention effect should be understood as referring to the effect in wh-questions, since sentences with a whword other than way ‘why’ can also be construed as a yes–no question in Korean.
2
Some native speakers find the sentences in (1) are not that bad (Nam-kil Kim, personal communication). I suggest that
it has to do with the pragmatic discourse-linking effect of the wh-words in (1) since they can be typically discourse-linked
like which-phrases in English as shown in (i):
(i)
Speaker A: Malun salam-kwa ttungttunghan salam-i
oko issta.
thin man-and fat
man-NOM coming
‘There are a thin man and a fat man coming.’
Speaker B: Ne-nun nwukwu-lul te
coaha-ni?
you-TOP who-ACC more like-QM
‘Which one do you like better?’
One can check this discourse-linking factor by asking whether the hearer can answer the question in (1a), for example, by
giving an answer like ‘someone you don’t know’. This answer is virtually impossible even to native speakers who report
(1a) is more or less acceptable, while one can give this answer to a similar English question below in (ii) (Barry Schein,
personal communication).
(ii)
Who did no one invite?
Once the discourse-linking effect is properly controlled, I believe one can give a consistent judgment on the examples in
(1).

2. however. as observed by Cho (1998) and Choi (2002). where the intervention effect does not arise quite against Beck and Kim’s (1997) expectation. I briefly review Beck and Kim’s (1997) proposal. Beck and Kim’s approach to intervention effect According to Beck and Kim (1997).-S. for which Beck and Kim (1997) cannot offer a satisfactory account. This suggests that the main premise of Beck and Kim (1997) for the intervention effect as a movement phenomenon cannot be maintained. 1982). The organization of the presentation is as follows: in section 2. which I suggest essentially follows from the different status of wh-words as indefinites. Choi. shows that way ‘why’ behaves differently from the other wh-words in that it does not show the intervention effect in wh-questions (see Cho. the paradigm above in (1–3) poses a nontrivial problem to Beck and Kim’s (1997) observation: Why is it that the intervention effect does not arise in (3) in contrast to (1)? In this paper. among others). the ungrammaticality of (1) can be accounted for in terms of Minimal Negative Structure Constraint which prohibits negation that triggers a Negation Induced Barrier from intervening between the wh-operator and its variable at LF: the definitions of Negation Induced Barrier and Minimal Negative Structure Constraint are given in (4) and (5). In section 4. who assume LF wh-movement (Huang. . Recent research. 1997:347) The first node that dominates a negative quantifier. 1997:347) If an LF trace b is dominated by a NIB a. 1998. (4) Negation Induced Barrier (Beck and Kim. respectively. namely. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 2057 Interestingly. I provide an alternative account for the contrast in the intervention effect in wh-questions in (1) and (3) with two ways of scope taking of wh-words. I will show that they cannot offer a principled account for the interesting contrast in the intervention effect as exhibited by the wh-questions with way ‘why’ and with the other wh-words as in (1) and (3). irrespective of the types of wh-words and irrespective of the positions they appear. I examine the property of so called wh-words in Korean in section 3 and claim that wh-words other than way ‘why’ are indefinites in the sense of Lewis (1975) and Heim (1982). its restriction. Section 7 is the conclusion. 3 An anonymous reviewer notes that wh-questions with wh-word . then the binder of b must also be dominated by a. and its nuclear scope is a Negation Induced Barrier (NIB). Section 6 is the implication of the present proposal for the intervention effect with various types of QPs. . I will offer a formal account for the contrast in the intervention effect in (1) and (3). I will show how the present proposal extends to account for the intricate pattern of intervention effects in wh-questions involving double object constructions and embedded wh-questions. NPI order are consistently preferred. (5) Minimal Negative Structure Constraint (Beck and Kim. 2002. . In section 5.3 (3) Amwuto way Mary-lul chotayhaci an hayss-ni? anyone why M-ACC invite NOT did-QM ‘Why did no one invite Mary?’ Thus. unselective binding and movement.Y. the intervention effect in (1) does not arise when the NPI is followed by way ‘why’ as in (3). I will also show that the present account for the intervention effect can extend to other wh-questions involving double object constructions and embedded wh-question constructions too.

2058 Y. predicts it to be ungrammatical contrary to the fact. among others). which violates Minimal Negative Structure Constraint (MNSC. if wh-words are uniformly quantifiers or wh-interrogatives underlyingly from which various readings derive. adopting domination in terms of nodes.4 A close scrutiny reveals. hence exhibiting no intervention effect. however. depending on the context where they occur. . Kuroda. it survives. since the VP that dominates the negation an ‘not’ and is the NIB intervenes between the whoperator and its variable at LF in (7). 1965. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 The examples in (1) will have the LF in (6) under Beck and Kim’s (1997) system. and immunity to an island. that wh-words in Korean. This is because the VP. 1992. however. henceforth) intervenes between the wh-operator and its variable. but not categories. 1996.’ Sometimes. The nature of wh-words The interpretation of wh-words in Korean type languages including Chinese and Japanese can vary. and is the Negation Induced Barrier (NIB. I will have a brief review of the indefinite as discussed in Heim (1982). ‘As for every x. Heim (1982). following Lewis (1975). If a man owns a donkey he always beats it. with the exception of way ‘why’. When it comes to (3).’ 4 Chung (1996) and Kim (1991). y. 3. 1937. henceforth). The following examples in (8) illustrate the behavior of the indefinite as mentioned just above (Heim. we need a careful examination of the nature of wh-words in Korean to lay the groundwork for our analysis later on. given the assumption that the NPI should be under the scope of negation (see Ladusaw.-S. y a donkey if x owns y. 1980). Choi. 1990. x an individual. MNSC. Before examining the nature of wh-words. Then why is it that the wh-question in (3) with way ‘why’ does not show the intervention effect in contrast to the ones in (1) with the other wh-words? To answer this important question. As for Korean. both suggesting that wh-words have their own quantificational force. and thus the nature of wh-words in these languages has been a topic of much discussion (Aoun and Li. Chung. Kim. (7) [CP whyi [IP [VP an [VP NPI ti ]]]] To the extent that (3) is acceptable. 1993. invite the question of why the adjunct wh-word way ‘why’ has a wh-interrogative reading only. x beats y. Li. Nishigauchi. x a cat if x falls from the fifth floor. if a cat falls from the fifth floor. 1982:123): (8) a. x survives. 1991. b. Kim (1991) claims that wh-words are uniformly quantifiers and Chung (1996) claims that they are uniformly wh-interrogatives. (6) [CP wh-operatori [IP [VP an [VP NPI ti ]]]] Beck and Kim (1997) assumes that the subject stays in its base position of Spec of VP at S structure in Korean and that negation an ‘not’ is adjoined to VP. suggests that an indefinite exhibits quantificational variability without its own inherent quantificational force. which dominates the negation an ‘not’. are indefinites in the sense of Lewis (1975) and Heim (1982). the main premise of Beck and Kim (1997) for the intervention effect as a movement phenomenon cannot be maintained. Cheng. ‘As for some x. however. 1991.

x a time.’ Choi (2002:32–37. x a manner if I talk about John in x. he visits us (for x). which I believe provide an ideal test for the status of wh-words as indefinites: (9) a. x visits us.-S.’ (11) *[CPJohni-i way o-myen] (proi) nul wuli-lul pangmwunhanta. c. if x comes. if John comes for x. if x comes. d. he returns home late (from x). he visits us (at x). c.’ [CPJohni-i encey o-myen] (proi) kakkum wuli-lul pangmwunhanta. J-NOM when come-if always us-ACC visit ‘For every x.’ [CPJohni-i encey o-myen] (proi) nul wuli-ul pangmwunhanta. x an individual. Mary gets angry (with x).’ (12) *[CPJohni-i way o-myen] (proi) kakkum wuli-lul pangmwunhanta. b. if John goes out to x. J-NOM where-to go out-if always late returns ‘For every x. who-NOM come-if always us-ACC visit ‘For every x. quantificational variability and island immunity. a donkey and a cat in (8) can scope out of the island with their quantificational force determined by adverbial quantifiers always. x a place. J-NOM when come-if sometimes us-ACC visit ‘For some x. if John comes at x. he returns home late (from x).’ [CPNwui-ka o-myen] (proi) kakkum wuli-lul pangmwunhanta. slightly modified) As shown above in (9) and (10).Y. With the two important characteristics of an indefinite in mind. x a reason. J-NOM why come-if sometimes us-ACC visit ‘For some x. x a manner.’ [CPJohni-i eti-lo oychwulha-myen] (proi) kakkum nusskey tolaonta. the interpretation of wh-words as universal quantifiers or existential quantifiers is determined by the adverbial quantifier nul ‘always’ and kakkum . Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 2059 The indefinites a man. J-NOM where-to go out-if sometimes late returns ‘For some x. M-TOP sometimes get angry ‘For some x. x visits us.’ ?[CPNay-ka ettehkey John-eytayhay malha-myen] I-NOM how J-about talk-if Mary-nun kakkum hwalul naykonhanta.’ [CPJohni-i eti-lo oychwulha-myen] (proi) nul nusskey tolaonta. M-TOP always get angry ‘For every x. [CPNwui-ka o-myen] (proi) nul wuli-lul pangmwunhanta.’ [CPNay-ka ettehkey John-eytayhay malha-myen] I-NOM how J-about talk-if Mary-nun nul hwalul naykonhanta. John visits us (at x). and sometimes at LF. he visits us (for x). J-NOM why come-if always us-ACC visit ‘For every x. if I talk about John in x. x an individual. d. who-NOM come-if sometimes us-ACC visit ‘For some x. namely. (10) a. Mary gets angry (with x). b. x a reason if John comes for x. x a place. if John comes at x. x a time. if John goes out to x. let us turn to the following adverbs of quantification constructions in (9–12) from Choi (2002). which are unselective binders as shown by the informal logical notations.

with the yes–no question morphemes ka and na. 1987. x always visits us. which is morphologically distinct for a yes–no question and a wh-question. (14) a.’ This state of affairs suggests that there is something like the quantifier-indexing (operator-indexing) mechanism (Heim. nya. when combined with the morpheme inka conveying the existential quantificational force.-S. if x comes. Suh. given that QM ni in standard Korean is homophonous for both [+Q. exhibiting quantificational variability. One salient property of wh-questions in Korean is that at the surface level. +WH] and [+Q. Ne-nun [CPJohn-i nwukwu-lul mannassta-ko] sayngkakha-ni? you-TOP J-NOM who-ACC met-COMP think-QM ‘Who do you think John met?’ Ne-nun [CPJohn-i way nussessta-ko] sayngkakha-ni? you-TOP J-NOM why late-COMP think-QM ‘Why do you think John came late?’ Who do you think John met? Why do you think John came late? Although standard Korean also has QMs ci. way ‘why’ cannot simply be construed in an analogous way as shown in (11) and (12). whereas (e)yo and (su)mnikka are used when equal or inferior in social status to the hearer.6 Besides the wh-question interpretation. (13a). This state of affairs crucially suggests that wh-words in (9) and (10) are indefinites exhibiting quantificational variability and island immunity. all homophonous for [+Q. b. (e)yo and (su)mnikka.2060 Y. whereas way ‘why’ in (11) and (12) is not an indefinite. +WH] and [+Q.5 One may thus reasonably believe that the different status of wh-words as indefinites also affects their mode of construal as wh-interrogatives. Meanwhile. prohibiting nonlocal unselective binding of an indefinite wh-word by the binder nul ‘always’ into the domain of the other binder inka in (i). Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 ‘sometimes’ in the main clause. x an individual. a wh-expression remains in situ with the question morpheme (QM. whereas in English the same expression is preposed into the sentence-initial position for scope taking as shown in (13) and (14) (Cheng. with the rising intonation at the end. WH]. (i) [CPNwu-inkai-ka o-myen] (proi) nul wuli-lul pangmwunhanta. WH] like ni. which convey a universal quantificational force and an existential quantificational force. The informal logical notations also indicate that these wh-words can take scope out of an island. which are simply ungrammatical. QMs ci and nya are used when the speaker is equal or superior to the hearer in social status. In fact in Kyengsang dialects spoken in the southern part of Korea the interpretation of wh-words other than way ‘why’ varies precisely with the choice of a particular question morpheme. One may interpret this as indicating that unlike way ‘why’ the interpretation of the indefinite wh-word in (13a) covaries with the choice of the QM. do not covary with the adverb in the matrix clause that conveys the universal quantificational force as in (i). unlike standard Korean. I will use ni as the representative one throughout. (13) a. respectively. unless otherwise necessary. 1991. who-INKA-NOM come-if always us-ACC visit ‘For some x. b. is also construed as a yes–no question with the wh-word interpreted as someone. the indefinite wh-word yields an existential 5 An anonymous reviewer points out that wh-words within the if-clause in (9) and (10). . 1982:146) at work in (i). whereas the analogous construal is simply impossible in (13b). Thus. 6 Like ni. among others). henceforth) marking its scope.

the same wh-word yields a wh-interrogative reading as illustrated in (15) (see Suh. and binding a sentential variable: [WH-either or]x you are going x (see Katz and Postal.’ b. it would be conceptually nice if the existential quantificational reading is also via the same mechanism. +WH] at LF. This is clearly shown in the Kyengsang dialect in (i) where the two types of QMs are morphologically distinct (see Suh. which. 1991.9 7 An anonymous reviewer points out that although wh-words (other than way ‘why’) can be used as indefinites as shown in (9) and (10) wh-indefinites and non-wh-indefinites (like plural common nouns or expressions corresponding to a/an +N in English) should differ in their feature composition and that the features distinguishing one from the other are responsible for the (un)availability of a wh-interrogative reading. However. Nwu-ka wassta. Please note that (ia) with the QM with [+Q. namely. In other words. the QM that serves as the wh-operator and the indefinite wh-word as its restriction appear separated at the surface level unlike English in (14). WH] is construed as ‘Are you going or not?’ whose structure can be roughly represented as the following with the QM serving as the yes-no operator. (i) a. I suggest that the existential quantifier reading of the indefinite wh-word in (13a) arises via unselective binding of the indefinite wh-word by the QM with [+ Q. I suggest the former have a WH-feature. Nwu-ka wass-na? who-NOM came-QM ‘Did someone come?’ Nwu-ka wass-no? who-NOM came-QM ‘Who came?’ I thus suggest that the wh-interrogative reading of the indefinite wh-word in (13a) arises via unselective binding of the indefinite wh-word by the QM with [+Q. 1987. as an anonymous reviewer points out. QM for the relevant readings (also see Aoun and Li. thus informally translated as ‘for which x. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 2061 quantifier reading. do you think John met man (x)?’8. borrowing the terminology from phonology. whereas with the wh-question morphemes ko and no. who-NOM came ‘Someone came. 1987:2ff).Y. do you think John met man (x)?’7 In an analogous way. WH]. 9 As one can see. 1964:104. WH]. which however is ‘underspecified’ in terms of [WH].-S. b. Nishigauchi. WH] can appear without a whword. 8 As an anonymous reviewer points out. (i) a. among others). QM with [+Q. WH] has nothing to do with the existential quantificational reading of the indefinite wh-word. 1993. with the QM as the wh-operator marking the scope of the indefinite wh-word that functions as a variable with no inherent wh-feature and also serves as the restriction of the QM. forming an operator variable construction. Cheng. yielding the reading informally represented as ‘for some x. among others). unlike QM with [+Q. Nwukwu-inka-ka wassta. among others). (15) a. since the latter cannot have a wh-interrogative reading even with the appropriate QM. +WH]. the existential quantificational reading of the indefinite wh-word obtains in (ia). Ni-ka ka-na? you-NOM go-QM ‘Are you going?’ b. may indicate that QM with [+Q. WH] at LF. Choe. *Ni-ka ka-no? you-NOM go-QM ‘Are you going?’ Given this. indefinite wh-words are not inherently wh-interrogatives or existential quantifiers. 1995. 1990. I agree with the reviewer in that wh-indefinites are different from other indefinites. The optionality of a wh-word is thus expected given the semantics of the QM with [+Q. Hence in (13a) with an indefinite wh-word. but require some other element.’ . one may argue that the existential quantificational reading of an indefinite wh-word may not be attributed to the unselective binding by the QM with [+Q. who-INKA-NOM came ‘Someone came.

leading to the violation of MNSC (also see Hoji. I suggest that it should undergo movement into Spec of CP at LF. 1994. 1996). checking off its wh-feature via spec-head agreement with the QM with [+Q. with (1a) repeated in (16) as a representative example. WH]. 1982) introduced for its interpretation. The nature of intervention effect Now let us turn to the interesting contrast in the intervention effect between (1). although expressed in different ways). since movement of way ‘why’ into the operator position of Spec of CP at LF does not induce the expected intervention effect.11 Below it will be shown that the difference in ways of scope taking between the two types of wh-words has important implication for the intervention effect in Korean wh-questions. although negation intervenes between the wh-operator and its variable at LF. . the indefinite wh-word should have the existential closure (Heim. and if the derivation D converges without application of some operation.2062 Y. QM with [+Q. 1985. to form an operator variable chain. Ne-nun [os-ul ettehkey ipnun salam-ul] coaha-ni? you-TOP clothes-ACC how wear man-ACC like-QM ‘What is the manner x such that you like a man who gets dressed in x?’ c. which is the null morpheme corresponding to the overt morpheme inka in (ib) that conveys the existential quantificational force. *Ne-nun [John-i way ssun chayk-ul] ilkess-ni? you-TOP J-NOM why wrote book-ACC read-QM ‘What is the reason x such that you read a book John wrote for x?’ This follows straightforwardly under the present system: movement of way ‘why’ versus in situ interpretation of indefinite wh-words via unselective binding. the grammaticality of (17) suggests that the main premise of Beck and Kim (1997) for the intervention effect as a movement phenomenon cannot be maintained. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 Now. and (3) with the adjunct wh-word way ‘why’. for the intervention effect as a movement phenomenon. Tsai. that the existential quantificational reading in (ia) does not necessarily refute the idea that the indefinite wh-word is construed as an existential quantifier via unselective binding by the QM with [+Q. thus without leaving a restriction in situ but a variable. Note. given that it is not an indefinite and thus has its own inherent wh-feature.’’ 11 As an anonymous reviewer notes. however. do you think John came late for x?’10. repeated as (17). way ‘why’ behaves differently from other wh-words with respect to the island effect as illustrated in (i) (also see Chung. (i) a. which is interpreted in situ via unselective binding. among others. Ne-nun [nwu-ka ssun chayk-ul] ilkess-ni? you-TOP who-NOM wrote book-ACC read-QM ‘Who is the person x such that you read a book x wrote?’ b. WH] in an interrogative sentence.-S. With no external binder in (ia). the intervention effect in (16) should not possibly arise from movement of the wh-word across the negation. namely. (16) *Amwuto nwukwu-lul chotayhaci an hayss-ni? anyone who-ACC invite NOT did-QM ‘Who did no one invite?’ (17) Amwuto way Mary-lul chotayhaci an hayss-ni? anyone why M-ACC invite NOT did-QM ‘Why did no one invite Mary?’ As discussed in section 2. +WH]. then that application is disallowed. with the former subject to the movement constraint of subjacency (Chomsky. Moreover. 1973). if the present proposal is on the right track that the wh-word as in (16) is an indefinite. 1991. (13b) therefore will be translated informally as ‘for which reason x. 4. 10 The proposed two ways of scope taking of in situ wh-words in Korean wh-questions fit into the minimalist thesis of movement as a last resort in Chomsky (1995:200) who suggests that ‘‘a shorter derivation is preferred to a longer one. as for way ‘why’ in (13b).

since wide scope of a QP over a wh-phrase should not be allowed. not being an indefinite. Pollock. Nishigauchi. I therefore argue that the ungrammaticality of (16) is due to violation of the constraint in (18) but not MNSC. should move into Spec of CP at LF for proper interpretation as a wh-interrogative by forming an operator variable chain. Engdahl. the question one should ask is why (16) violates (18). (19) John-i nwukwu-lul manna-ss-ni? J-NOM who-ACC meet-PAST-QM ‘Who did John meet?’ Given the recent strict projectionist hypothesis (Chomsky. +WH] as the wh-operator binding the indefinite wh-word and marking its scope. given that the semantics of questions is sets of propositions (Karttunen. 1988) are limited to universal QP types. the position of the QM at LF bears crucial importance in determining the scope of a wh-interrogative relative to a QP in wh-questions.Y. the wh-word in (16) is an indefinite whose wh-interrogative reading arises via unselective binding at LF. 1991:80ff). with each inflectional morpheme of the verb heading a separate functional projection within the system. According to our proposal. Joo. assuming quantifier raising is driven to avoid a type mismatch a la Heim and Kratzer (1998). the adjunct wh-word necessarily takes scope over the subject QP (NPI) in Spec of IP at LF. as opposed to Beck and Kim (1997). 1991. right on top of VP: (20) [IP [TP [VP V ] T] I ] 12 The constraint in (18) may sound like a mere stipulation. among many others): Quantifiers which can apparently take scope over a wh-phrase (assuming pair list answer signals it a la May.-S. in our system given the nature of the QM as the wh-operator for an indefinite wh-word. with the QM at the end determining the clause type as a question. it is also compatible with the independent claims in the literature against a QP taking scope over a wh-phrase (Chierchia. As shown in (19). unless otherwise specified. consisting of more than one bound morpheme. 1993. where the past tense morpheme and the QM project TP and IP respectively. Korean verbal morphology including the QM is heavily agglutinating. Now. among others). I mean by the QM the one with [+Q. among others) viewing the IP system as an extension of the VP system. Hereafter. I will first try to locate where the QM in Korean is base-generated. with the QM with [+Q. 1991. Thus. +WH]. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 2063 Then how can we account for the contrasting grammaticality of (16) and (17)? Given our proposal that way ‘why’ in (17). assuming LF is the only level valid for the semantic interpretation including scope following Chomsky (1995)12: (18) A wh-interrogative should take scope over a QP in wh-questions at LF. However. 1989. Now. 1985. 1990. . although it has been widely assumed to project CP albeit without much discussion (Cheng. I will thus propose the following constraint. 1977) and that quantification is defined on propositions not sets of propositions (see Chierchia. 1989. 1993. the particular sequence of the bound morphemes on the verb in (19) including the QM thus leads one to postulate the following clausal structure in (20). the argument for pair list answer as signaling wide scope of a QP over a wh-phrase is problematic. Besides. 1986.

Martin. 1996. (24) 13 a.2064 Y. Given the status of hako as the direct speech marker heading CP. (22) John-un [CPMary-ka mwues-ul sat-nya-ha-ko] mwulessta.’ On this view. *John-i [CPMary-ka wass-{ni/ci/eyo}-ko] mwulessta. the following example where the QM nya fails to show complementary distribution with the indirect speech marker ko that is standardly assumed to head CP further suggests that QM heads IP: (21) John-un [CPMary-ka mwues-ul sat-nya-ko] mwulessta. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 Also. .’ Now recall that it has been a wellknown observation in the literature that the choice of a particular complementizer reflects certain properties of the verbal system of the clause. (23) a. (Chomsky and Lasnik. I think that John left. respectively. respectively. 1999. and eyo in the embedded clause can cooccur with only hako.-S. the lack of complementary distribution between the QM and the indirect speech marker in (21) cannot necessarily be associated with the QM and the indirect speech marker heading different projections of IP and CP. J-TOP M-NOM what-ACC bought-QM-say-COMP asked ‘John asked what Mary bought. As already shown in (21) and (22). Martin. This is illustrated by the cooccurrence of the complementizer that and the finite I. 1992). ci. QMs ni. J-NOM M-NOM came-QM-COMP asked ‘John asked whether Mary came. slightly adapted) One may however still suggest that nya-ko in (21) is a reduced form of nya-ha-ko as in (22). I’d prefer for John to do it. and the complementizer for and the nonfinite I in English below in (24). J-TOP M-NOM what-ACC bought-QM-COMP asked ‘John asked what Mary bought. One can find additional evidence for the QM heading IP below in (23). with the QM nya heading its own CP (see Chung. it should be noted that hako in (22) as one unit is the direct speech marker as distinguished from ko that is the indirect speech marker. as originally claimed by Kim (1991). (22) thus cannot serve as an argument against the proposal that QM heads IP. Song. which is formalized as the C–I agreement rule. b.13 The grammaticality of (21) and (22) thus indicates that the matrix predicate mwulessta ‘asked’ can take CP headed by either of the two speech markers and that QM nya in the embedded clause is compatible with both speech markers. J-NOM M-NOM came-QM-COMP asked ‘John asked whether Mary came. 1991:227. 1977:434) The indirect speech marker ko is first attested in the late 19th century whereas the use of the direct speech marker hako goes as far back to the 15th century (see King.’ (Kim. 1996). 1994. although the matrix predicate mwulessta ‘asked’ can take a clause headed by the indirect speech marker ko as well as the direct speech marker hako. However. 1992. although the two may be historically related (see King. among others). and that the verb ha ‘say’ and the indirect speech marker ko head VP and CP. Lee. b. 1993a. 1994. Sohn.’ John-i [CPMary-ka wass-{ni/ci/eyo}-hako] mwulessta.

*John-i Mary-lul manna-ni-la. Mary-nun kuttay yeppess-ci. one has to say that the SM expressing modality also heads CP. J-TOP M-NOM T-ACC met-IND-COMP think ‘John thinks that Mary met Tom. M-TOP that time beautiful-SM ‘Mary was probably beautiful at that time. the suppositive morpheme ci (SM. henceforth). (25) Nwu-ka wass-{ni/ci/nya/sumnikka/eyo}? who-NOM came-QM ‘Who came?’ At this point one remaining question is how selectional restriction by the matrix predicate mwulessta ‘asked’ can be satisfied as in (21) and (22) if the QM is indeed in the head of IP but not CP. b. *John-i Mary-lul mannass-ni-ta. imperative marker (IMP) la. I suggest that selectional restriction is satisfied via C–I system following Grimshaw (1986): The matrix predicate selects the head of its CP complement. competing for the same syntactic position with the QM. I wonder if John met Mary. note that QMs including those in (23a) can freely occur in the matrix clause without any restriction as shown in (25). we-NOM M-ACC meet-QM-PROP . (23) therefore can be construed as an instance of C–I agreement. further suggesting that the restricted distribution of the QM with respect to a particular speech marker in the embedded clause in (23) is an instance of C–I agreement.’ b. a position which goes against the observation in the literature that modality is typically expressed in INFL cross-linguistically (see Chomsky. 1989. John-un [CPMary-ka Tom-ul mannass-ta-ko] sayngkakhanta. b. As one can see in (26). J-TOP M-NOM who-ACC met-QM-COMP asked ‘John asked whom Mary met.’ This suggests that complementizers in Korean are lacking their inherent [Q] feature. thus further supporting the proposal for QM heading IP. J-NOM M-ACC met-QM-IND b. Pollock. personal communication). expressing modality of supposition enters into complementary distribution with the QM ni. that is. as illustrated in (ii) with ko. an argument as originally made by Whitman (1989).14 Finally. (iii) a. J-NOM M-ACC meet-QM-IMP c. (26) a. To the extent that one claims that QM heads CP. *I wonder that John met Mary. which in turn selects the head of IP. marking their respective clause types (Jean-Roger Vergnaud. complementizers in Korean. John-un [CPMary-ka nwukwu-lul mannass-nya-ko] mwulessta. (ii) a. and propositive marker (PROP) ca show complementary distribution with the QM as illustrated with the QM ni. sentence ending morphemes such as indicative marker (IND) ta. M-TOP that time beautiful-QM-SM This means that SM and QM are base-generated to compete for the same syntactic position. This indicates that they all head IP. 14 Unlike English in (i). In the meantime. which may have to do with the fact that clause typing morphemes including the QM in Korean are residing in I.Y. with the QM in I subject to cooccurrence restriction imposed by the speech marker in C. (i) a. can introduce both an interrogative clause and a declarative clause.-S. As shown in (iii). Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 2065 With the above observation in the literature. *Wuli-ka Mary-lul manna-ni-ca. For this. I would like to present the following as a further argument for the QM heading IP. both direct speech marker hako and indirect speech marker ko. 1955 and subsequent works.’ *Mary-nun kuttay yeppess-ni-ci.

given that I. 16 Although Korean is a strict head-final language. (27) violates (18) since the QM as the wh-operator that unselectively binds the indefinite wh-word and marks its scope at LF is below the scope of the subject QP in Spec of IP. 1995. +WH] in I.18.-S.’ Also. assuming c-command in the sense of Reinhart (1976) as a syntactic notion of scope. determining the status of CP in terms of [Q]. 1998)16. 15 As for the claim that QM heads IP. J-NOM yesterday hard studied ‘John studied hard yesterday. the data in (21–26). the surface subject will be in Spec of IP to satisfy the subject requirement of a sentence. I-TOP M-NOM why came-QM do not know ‘I do not know why Mary came. the LF for (16) will be (27). the constraint of EPP. one may maintain that there is an empty C as shown in (ii) with the matrix predicate selecting C. One may interpret this as indicating that the surface subject as in (i) is in a position higher than Spec of TP. the latter being subject to cooccurrence restriction imposed by the former. 18 In a neutral context. as discussed in footnote 14. Thus. postulating an empty C as in (ii) does not seem to be a problem. the example in (i) with the order of the subject before temporal adverbial sounds the most natural as compared with the ones with the subject either right after manner or temporal adverbial. for example (to better control a potential intervening factor such as topicality) (Chungmin Lee.17. namely. However. 1991. especially since complementizers that and if as in English marking the [Q] force of the clause they introduce are typically higher than the subject of the clause they introduce. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 Whitman. Under the VP internal subject hypothesis (Koopman and Sportiche. let us go back to (16). namely. 1981.20 Thus. which in turn selects the QM nunci with [+Q. (16) is correctly predicted as ungrammatical. I-TOP M-NOM why came-QM-COMP do not know ‘I do not know why Mary came. I will hereafter use a head-initial notation for the LF representations for the reader’s convenience.2066 Y. with the subject QP in Spec of IP under the fairly standard assumption that quantifier raising is triggered to resolve a type mismatch (see Heim and Kratzer.’ 19 Since the precise position of negation is orthogonal to the present analysis. assuming temporal and manner adverbials are licensed by T and V. although subtle. but not T is the head of a sentence under the present proposal for the Korean clausal architecture in (20) (see Chomsky. complementizers in Korean do not have the inherent [Q] feature. Spec of IP. among others). I will not notate it at the LF representations throughout the paper. With the present claim for the QM heading IP.15 Now. . as discussed in footnote 14. among many others). an anonymous reviewer wonders whether an embedded question in (i) ending with the QM but not allowing the overt complementizer to be attached is a CP or IP. 20 The definition of c-command in Reinhart (1976:32) is given in (i).19: (27) [IP QPj [I’ QMi [TP [VP tj V whoi-ACC ]]]] As one can see. among others). (i) Node A c(constituent)-commands node B if neither A nor B dominates the other and the first branching node which dominates A dominates B. (ii) Na-nun [CP[IPMary-ka way wass-nunci] C] molunta. being adjoined to their respective maximal projections. (i) John-i ecey yelsimhi kongpwuhayssta. the fact that unlike English the same complementizer in Korean can introduce both an interrogative clause and a declarative clause suggests that clause typing morphemes including the QM in Korean head IP. 1989. personal communication). One may test this in an embedded context. Hence. (i) Na-nun [Mary-ka way wass-nunci-{*ko/*hako}] molunta. 17 One may find it hard to follow the claim that subject is higher than the morpheme that determines the clausal type as an anonymous reviewer points out.’ Given the proposal that selectional restriction of the matrix predicate is satisfied via C–I in Korean. together with the particular sequence of the verbal morphology including the QM as in (19) lead to the conclusion that QM heads IP but not CP.

1999): (i) *Johni expected himi to seem to me [ti to be intelligent] Under the interpretation as indicated. hence discharging the whfeature of the QM. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 2067 The present analysis of the ungrammaticality of (16) invites two important questions. which is the wh-operator and unselective binder of the indefinite wh-word. however. QM could eventually take scope over the QP. and that QM is base-generated in the head of IP. 21 Chomsky (1995:326) claims that A-movement is not subject to reconstruction mainly based on the following (also see Lasnik. binding them for proper interpretation. The other is what blocks reconstruction of the subject QP into its base position of Spec of VP.-S. 22 I agree with an anonymous reviewer in that movement of way ‘why’ in this paper is not morphology driven. since the QM in the head of IP in (27) can already bind the indefinite wh-word for the wh-interrogative reading to obtain. 1995. it should not be raised. . given economy in the sense of Chomsky (1995).1 involving scrambling strongly suggest that A-movement is not subject to reconstruction (see Chomsky. not being an indefinite. the idea does not seem to be that unreasonable. while QM stays in situ with its [+WH] checked via C–I. is not a possibility. where the indefinite wh-word precedes the NPI without exhibiting the intervention effect. May. since Korean data to be discussed in section 5. Now before closing the section. 1990. not violating (18). the wh-interrogative way ‘why’ in Spec of CP can take scope over the subject QP in Spec of IP. 1985. Since nothing requires movement of the QM. (28) Amwuto way Mary-lul chotayhaci an hayss-ni? anyone why M-ACC invite NOT did-QM ‘Why did no one invite Mary?’ Note that way. (i) can be construed as a Binding Condition B violation. let us turn to (17) repeated as (28) to see how the lack of the intervention effect can be accounted for. The first option. respectively. though under reconstruction the violation should be obviated with him interpreted in the position occupied by the trace (cf. If this much is assumed. Lasnik. Mahajan. 2000). should move into Spec of CP at LF to be properly interpreted as a wh-interrogative via spec-head agreement with the QM that should be raised from its base generated position of I into C at LF to discharge its wh-feature. with ti in the head of IP the trace of the QM and the same ti within VP the trace of way ‘why’. ‘why’. satisfying (18).21 Now. Consider (2a) as a representative one. one may possibly resolve the problem in that movement of way ‘why’ is now morphology driven. from being raised from I to C in its LF in (27). especially given the proposal that way ‘why’ is not an indefinite. One is what blocks the QM. thus correctly predicting (28) as grammatical. Fox.Y. repeated below as (30).22 (29) [CP whyi [C’ QMi [IP QPk [I’ ti [TP[VP tk V ti ]]]]]] As one can see above. among others). Note that selectional restriction is also satisfied via C–I in Korean with the present proposal for the QM heading IP. given the status of the QM for way ‘why’ as a mere WH-feature holder unlike the QM for indefinite wh-words. Although I need to work further on this issue. let us turn to (2). 1999. The second option is not possible either. Although controversial. If either of the two options were allowed. an alternative proposal one may suggest would be that movement of way ‘why’ into C be attracted by the QM in the head of IP via C–I. The LF will be (29). which serves as the wh-operator.

although marginal. 1996). as an anonymous reviewer points out.24: (31) [CP[C’ QMi [IP whoi-NOM [I’ ti [TP[VP QPj -ACC [VP ti V tj ]]]]]]] As one can see. see footnote 5). Hence. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 Nwu-ka amwuto chotayhaci an hayss-ni? who-NOM anyone invite NOT did-QM ‘Who invited no one?’ One may first wonder how the wh-interrogative reading can obtain given that the indefinite wh-word is in Spec of IP at the overt syntax and that the QM is base-generated in the head of IP. with the occurrence of ti in the head of IP and the same occurrence of ti within VP the trace of the QM and that of the wh-word. the QM as the wh-operator binding the indefinite wh-word and marking its scope can take scope over the object QP in the VP-adjoined position. As a matter 23 One may wonder why the grammar does not utilize the spec-head agreement mechanism for the subject wh-word in Spec of IP in (31) if there are two mechanisms (unselective binding and spec-head agreement) available in Korean. As a result. the idea of the QM binding the indefinite wh-word at D structure for a wh-interrogative reading cannot account for this asymmetry.-S. with the QM in I of the matrix IP and the QM in I of the embedded IP respectively binding the subject wh-word in Spec of IP and the object wh-word within VP at LF (assuming local unselective binding of the indefinite wh-word by the binder. If so. it follows that the QM should move into the head of CP at LF as a last resort such that it can bind the indefinite wh-word for the wh-interrogative reading to obtain. Since the indefinite wh-word cannot be reconstructed into the base position of Spec of VP. Please recall that the indefinite wh-word obtains its quantificational force by being bound by the QM that serves as its wh-operator. movement of the QM will be unnecessary. 24 One may wonder what if the QM binds the indefinite wh-word at D structure in (31) before the latter is raised into its surface position of Spec of IP. (i) a. intervention effects will somehow vanish even when the QP is followed by the indefinite wh-word. 1996. respectively. since both indefinite wh-words in (ia) will have embedded scope. 5. Bill-un Tom-eykey [CPMary-ka mwues-ul nwukwu-eykey cwuess-nunci] mwuless-ni? B-TOP T-DAT M-NOM what-ACC who-DAT gave-QM asked-QM ‘What is the thing x such that Bill asked Tom to whom Mary gave x?’ If the intuition is correct. 1990:35. discharging the wh-feature of the QM. Lee (1982). The reading in (ia) obtains straightforwardly in the present system. the following LF for (30) obtains. Then the raising of the QM to C would be superfluous in (31) as an anonymous reviewer points out. .2068 (30) Y. bound within VP by the embedded QM. satisfying the constraint in (18). the reviewer points out that (ib) admits the matrix scope reading of the direct object wh-word (with a strong accent on it). and (30) is therefore correctly predicted as grammatical. Bill-i ne-ekey [CPnwu-ka mwues-ul hayss-nya-ko] mwulepoass-ni? B-NOM you-DAT who-NOM what-ACC did-QM-COMP asked-QM ‘Who is the person x such that Bill asked you what x did?’ (Nishigauchi. Prediction of the present analysis The prediction the present analysis makes is that in wh-questions where the QM as the wh-operator marking the scope of an indefinite wh-word can take scope over a QP. Nishigauchi. however. Otherwise the indefinite wh-word cannot be so construed to begin with. Incidentally. 1990). One may account for the reading in (ib) under the present system by assuming local scrambling of the subject and the direct object wh-word to the embedded IP-adjoined position at the overt syntax (see Chung. This further suggests that the idea of the QM binding the indefinite wh-word at D structure is implausible. reports that the subject and object wh-words in (ia) show subtle asymmetry in that the former but not the latter can take matrix scope (also see Chung. the subject wh-word cannot enter into spec-head agreement with the QM in the head of IP in (31). slightly modified) b. and with the object QP adjoined to VP to avoid a type mismatch23. Note that wh-words (other than way ‘why’) are indefinites with no inherent wh-feature.

Postal. 1977. (32) is correctly predicted as grammatical. Ross. among others). 1985. although not perfect. Suh. 1988. thus not violating the constraint in (18). with the indirect object QP (NPI) adjoined to VP to avoid a type mismatch. 1977. contrary to Beck and Kim’s (1997) expectation. Hence. the prediction seems to be confirmed in wh-questions involving double object constructions and embedded wh-questions.Y. the former is still acceptable. 1988. Hong. where the NPI and the indefinite wh-word are reversed via scrambling (Chomsky and Lasnik. Double object constructions Consider the following wh-question in (32) involving a double object construction with the indefinite wh-word nwukwu ‘who’ preceded by the NPI: (32) ?John-i amwu-ekey-to nwukwu-lul sokayhaci an hayss-ni? J-NOM anyone-DAT who-ACC introduce NOT did-QM ‘Who did John introduce to no one?’ As one can see. among others). whose LF will be (34). the grammaticality of (33) should be on a par with that of (32). Kang. the intervention effect in (32) does not quite arise. taking scope over the indirect object QP in the VP-adjoined position. but just slightly deviant as compared with (33). It has been suggested that scrambling in monoclausal constructions as in (33) is not subject to reconstruction (Beck and Kim. Saito. If the indefinite wh-word reconstructs into its base position at LF where the constraint in (18) applies. 5. respectively26: 25 Beck and Kim (1997:343) reports that the example as in (32) is ungrammatical whereas the one as in (33) is perfect. 1972) and Binding Condition C (Chomsky. (34) [IP NPj-NOM [I’ QMi [TP[VP QP-DATk [VP tj V tk whoi-ACC ]]]]] Please note that as the wh-operator the QM in (34) unselectively binds the indefinite wh-word and marks its scope. 1992. (33) Nwukwu-lul John-i amwu-ekey-to sokayhaci an hayss-ni? who-ACC J-NOM anyone-DAT introduce NOT did-QM ‘Who did John introduce to no one?’ The lack of the intervention effect in (32) can receive a straightforward account in the present system.25 Now. it should be noted that according to native speakers I consulted. one remaining question is why (33) with the indefinite wh-word scrambled to the front of the sentence is better than (32). 1990. 1997. . At the same time. despite the intervening NPI. Higginbotham. 1980. 1967. The claim is in fact supported by (35a) and (35b) that involve Weak Crossover (Chomsky. Wasow. I agree with them to the extent that (32) is not as good as (33). although subtle. 1985. 1981). among others).-S. Hoji. 1971. 26 The slightly deviant status of (35) is attributed to the fact that ku ‘he’ does not yield a bound variable reading as easily as the English counterpart he (see Hoji. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 2069 of fact.1.

respectively. the QM should move into the head of CP at LF as a last resort in order to bind the scrambled indefinite wh-word for the wh-interrogative reading to obtain. since way ‘why’ does not leave its restriction at LF. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 a. and the QM and its restriction are not intervened by a QP at LF in the latter. I suggest that the slightly deviant status of (32) as compared with (33) has to do with the fact that QM and its restriction are separated by an intervening (defined in terms of c-command) QP at LF. among others). ?Enu kyoswui-lul kui-uy haksayng-i ti chotayhayss-ni? which professor-ACC he-POSS student-NOM invited-QM *‘Which professori did hisi student invite?’ ?[Johni-uy enu sacin-ul]j kui-ka ceil tj sileha-ni? J-POSS which picture-ACC he-NOM most dislike-QM *‘Which picture of Johni does hei dislike most?’ The grammaticality of (35) strongly indicates that scrambling of a wh-word in a monoclausal construction is A-movement and that it is not subject to reconstruction. discharging the wh-feature of the QM. one salient difference between the two LF representations in (34) and (36) is that a QP intervenes between the QM that serves as the wh-operator and the wh-word that serves as its restriction in the former but not in the latter. What I am suggesting here is reminiscent of Pesetsky (2000:67). Also see Chomsky (1993:27ff) for related discussions. the indirect object QP intervening between way ‘why’ and its trace does not affect the grammaticality of (37). satisfying the constraint in (18). with ti in the head of IP and the same ti within VP the trace of the QM and that of way ‘why’. where essentially the same idea is independently proposed as based on English and German data. 28 Pesetsky (2000:67) suggests that a semantic restriction on a quantifier (including wh) may not be separated from that quantifier by a scope-bearing element. 1992. On the basis of this difference. Both satisfy (18). Also the wh-word in the former does not leave its restriction but variable at LF. . respectively. (36) [C’ QMi [IP whoi-ACC [IP NPj-NOM [I’ ti [TP [VP QP-DATk [VP tj V tk ti ]]]]]]] As one can see. Lee. among others). Saito. 1994. albeit the constraint in (18) is satisfied. The LF is given in (38). Saito. As a result. (37) John-i amwu-ekey-to way Mary-lul sokayhaci an hayss-ni? J-NOM anyone-DAT why M-ACC introduce NOT did-QM ‘Why did John introduce Mary to no one?’ (38) [CP whyi [C’ QMi [IP NPk-NOM [I’ ti [TP [VP QP-DATm [VP tk V tm ti ]]]]]]] As one can see above in (38). the wh-operator that unselectively binds it. the indefinite wh-word cannot be so construed to begin with. Now. 29 The same is true of (28) with way ‘why’ and (30) with an indefinite wh-word in section 4.28 The present suggestion seems to be plausible. with ti in the head of IP and the same occurrence of ti within VP the trace of the QM and that of the wh-word.27 Otherwise. b. Lee. Please recall our discussion in section 3 that an indefinite wh-word serves as the restriction of the QM. especially given the fact that the example in (37) with way ‘why’ preceded by the NPI is perfect.2070 (35) Y. 1988. the LF for (33) will be (36).29 27 It is quite a standard assumption that the IP-adjoined position can serve as an A-position in Korean type languages (Kuroda. 1993b. the wh-interrogative way ‘why’ in Spec of CP takes scope over the indirect object QP in the VP-adjoined position. Moreover. 1993b.-S. 1992. assuming monoclausal scrambling in (33) involves IP adjunction (see Cho.

Interestingly. which does not exhibit the intervention effect. given its LF in (41): the QM in the matrix clause. and thus predicting (39) as grammatical. which has not been discussed fully yet in Korean literature. . let us turn to the intervention effect in embedded wh-questions. (39) (?)Ne-nun [CPamwuto nwukwu-lul chotayhaci an hayssta-ko] sayngkakha-ni? you-TOP anyone who-ACC invite NOT did-COMP think-QM ‘Who do you think no one invited?’ (40) Ne-nun [CPnwu-ka amwuto chotayhaci an hayssta-ko] sayngkakha-ni? you-TOP who-NOM anyone invite NOT did-COMP think-QM ‘Who do you think invited no one?’ The lack of the intervention effect in (39) follows in the present system. takes scope over the subject QP in the embedded Spec of IP. the following sentences should differ in grammaticality. The LF for (43) is given in (44). satisfying the constraint in (18). the QM in the matrix clause binding the indefinite wh-word in the embedded clause and marking its scope takes scope over the object QP in the VP-adjoined position in the embedded clause. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 2071 5. including Beck and Kim (1997).Y. whose LF is in (42). respectively: 30 According to the present proposal. with ti in the head of IP and the same ti within VP the trace of the QM and that of way ‘why’. although it conforms to the constraint in (18). that is.-S. the intervention effect in (16) somehow vanishes when embedded as illustrated by (39). with its slight deviant status having to do with the fact that the QM and its restriction are separated by the intervening QP at LF. which is not the case in (40). Embedded wh-questions Next. without the QP intervening the QM and its restriction. (41) [IP NPk-TOP [I’ QMi [TP[VP tk V [CP[IP QPj [TP[VP tj V whoi-ACC ]]]]]]]] Again the slightly deviant status of (39) is attributed to the fact that the QM and its restriction are separated by the intervening QP in the embedded Spec of IP. I still find (ib) is somehow better than (ia). ?John-i amwu-eykey-to [CPMary-ka nwukwu-lul mannassta-ko] J-NOM anyone-DAT M-NOM who-ACC met-COMP malhaci an hayss-ni? say NOT did-QM ‘Who did John tell no one that Mary met?’ Although subtle. the wh-operator that unselectively binds the indefinite whword in the embedded clause and marks its scope. As one can see in (42). which an anonymous reviewer doubts: (i) a. ?*Amwuto John-eykey [CPMary-ka nwukwu-lul mannassta-ko] anyone J-DAT M-NOM who-ACC met-COMP malhaci an hayss-ni? say NOT did-QM ‘Who did no one tell John that Mary met?’ b.30 (42) [IPNPk-TOP [I’ QMi [TP[VP tk V [CP[IP whoi-NOM [TP[VP QPj-ACC [VP ti V tj]]]]]]]]] The present analysis can also account for the example in (43) with way ‘why’.2. which is just slightly deviant as compared with (40) where the wh-word precedes the NPI.

the wh-interrogative way ‘why’ in Spec of CP in the matrix clause can take scope over the subject QP in the embedded Spec of IP. Interestingly. ?*John-un [CPMary-ka swuhak-ul way tulessta-ko] sayngkakhaci J-TOP M-NOM math-ACC why took-COMP think an ha-ni? NOT do-QM ‘Why doesn’t John think Mary took the math the class?’ The reviewer thus points out that if negation does not block movement of way ‘why’ at LF as shown in (28) and (43). too. 1997). the examples in (iab) further support two ways of scope taking in Korean wh-questions. (ib) should be fine. violating MNSC as schematically represented below in (45). 1983). Kuno and Takami. ti ]]] 6. . John-un [CPMary-ka mwusun kwamok-ul tulessta-ko] sayngkakhaci J-TOP M-NOM what course-ACC took-COMP think an ha-ni? NOT do-QM ‘What course doesn’t John think Mary took?’ b. in contrast to (iic) which shows the effect in that it does not allow a long construal although with a strong accent on don’t the effect would disappear (Christopher Long. This is because way ‘why’ does not leave its restriction at LF. Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 (43) Ne-nun [CPamwuto Tom-ul way chotayhaci an hayssta-ko] sayngkakha-ni? you-TOP anyone T-ACC why invite NOT did-COMP think-QM ‘Why do you think no one invited Tom?’ (44) [CPwhyi [C’ QMi [IPNPk-TOP [I’ ti [TP[VP tk V [CP[IP QPj [TP[VP tj V ti ]]]]]]]]]] As one can see in (44). However. Why do you think Mary didn’t come to class on time? c. will intervene between the wh-operator in Spec of CP and its variable at LF. If so. with the indefinite wh-word not subject to the inner island effect in contrast to way ‘why’ since the former does not move (cf. these examples will be ruled out as equally ungrammatical contrary to the fact. the 31 An anonymous reviewer points out that there exists a contrast between the indefinite wh-word and way ‘why’ in (i) with the lalter exhibiting the inner island effect (Ross. . since negation an ‘not’ which triggers the NIB. . not violating the constraint in (18). under Beck and Kim’s (1997) system. [VP an [VP .-S. Also note that the grammaticality of (43) is better than (39). (45) [CP wh-operatori .2072 Y. (i) a. Why don’t you think Mary came to class on time? This suggests that the inner island effect for WHY does NOT show up as in (iiab) whereas the effect does indeed show up as in (ib) and (iic) where WHY in the matrix Spec of CP and its trace in the embedded clause are separated by the negation in the matrix clause at LF.. Why didn’t Mary come to class on time? b. . (ii) a.31 By contrast. Under their system assuming LF wh-movement a la Huang (1982). the intricate pattern of intervention effects in wh-questions with an indefinite wh-word and way ‘why’ in double object constructions in (32) and (37). personal communication). . thus the subject QP intervening between the wh-operator way ‘why’ and its trace within the VP not affecting the grammaticality of (43). Implications for intervention effect with other types of QPs I thus far claimed that the ungrammaticality of (16) with a subject QP followed by an indefinite wh-word is essentially due to violation of the LF constraint in (18). and the embedded wh-question constructions in (39) and (43) remains unexplained. why in English does not show the inner island effect in (iiab) either. although subtle.

cannot take scope over the subject QP in Spec of IP.32 (46) ?Motun salam-i nwukwu-lul chotayhayss-ni? everyone-NOM who-ACC invited-QM ‘Who did everyone invite?’ The grammaticality of (46) is quite unexpected. As the reviewer points out. a discourse-linked wh-word. one cannot however represent the licensing mechanism of a discourse-linked wh-word as distinguished from a non-discourse linked wh-word in wh-questions as in Pesetsky (1987). whereas with a modified QP such as se NP miman ‘less than three NP’ or twu NP isang ‘more than two NP’ which are well known for resisting a specific group construal. may not be subject to the constraint in (18).-S. 36 An anonymous reviewer notes that the following with a modified subject QP seems fine: (i) Ipen taysen-eyse kwapanswu-ka nwukwu-lul cicihayss-ni? this presidential election-in more than half-NOM who-ACC supported-QM ‘Who did more than half of the voters support in the presidential election?’ I suggest that its improved grammaticality has to do with the discourse-linking effect as discussed in footnote 2. Liu. b. being nonquantificational even under the wh-interrogative reading. The grammaticality of (46). which resists the construal. although violating (18). 1995:166–168). Reinhart. while taking scope over negation (see Sohn. (46) will become ungrammatical (Beghelli. among others). for Japanese). 35 most (of ) NP type QP also seems to admit a group construal as shown in (i). Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 2073 acceptability of (16) improves when the subject QP is replaced with a universal QP as illustrated in (46). Also the QP most of the presenters in (ib) does not covary with the choice of the individuals of the set denoted by the QP many people. (i) a. The intuition. 1997. 1997. which as the wh-operator binds the indefinite wh-word and marks its scope. 1985. I will simply translate it as ‘more than’ for simplicity’s sake.36 (48) 32 a. the grammaticality will remain more or less the same. ?Manun salam-i nwukwu-lul chotayhayss-ni? many man-NOM who-ACC invited-QM ‘Who did many men invite?’ See Kim (1991) for the same intuition on the example as in (46) (also see Hoji. The example in (ia) means that there is a specific group of most students such that John did not like them.35. in violation of the constraint in (18). thus circumventing (18) in contrast to (16) with the existential QP amwuto ‘no one’. Although the term ‘specific’ tends to be applied typically in relation to indefinites.Y. as I claim. is still acceptable in contrast to (16). seems to be fairly clear: unlike a non-discourse linked wh-word. given that an indefinite wh-word does not move even at LF in the present system. se NP ‘three NP’. given its LF in (47) where the QM in the head of IP. is due to nonquantificational ‘specific group’ interpretation of the universal QP. 33 . Please note that the presidential election is a situation where the indefinite wh-word is most likely to be discourse-linked.33 Now the prediction our analysis makes is that when the QP in (46) is replaced with a QP such as manun NP ‘many NP’. myess myess NP ‘several NP’ or taypwupwun-uy NP ‘most of NP’ that can have a specific group construal. John didn’t like most students. Many people didn’t criticize most of the presenters.34 The prediction is confirmed as shown in (48) and (49). it can also apply to definites (see Lyons. (47) [IPQPj-NOM [I’ QMi [TP [VP tj V whoi-ACC ]]]] One needs to account for why (46). 1997. 1999:168ff). 34 Although the semantics of isang ‘the same or larger in number or amount’ is different from more than in English. however.

Acknowledgements Among others. (50) (51) nwukwu-lul chotayhayssta-ko] sayngkakha-ni? (?)Ne-nun [CPtwu salam isang-i you-TOP two man more-NOM who-ACC invited-COMP think-QM ‘Who do you think that more than two men invited?’ [IPNPk-TOP [I’ QMi [TP[VP tk V [CP[IP QPj-NOM [TP[VP tj V whoi-ACC ]]]]]]]] Again.37 The prediction is indeed confirmed as illustrated in (50). as opposed to them. since (50) with the same type of QP is still acceptable. It will not help to stipulate that modified QPs in (49) are interveners for wh-movement at LF as in Beck (1996). Choi / Lingua 117 (2007) 2055–2076 b.-S. for which Beck and Kim (1997) cannot offer a principled account. Based on the interesting contrast of the intervention effect in wh-questions with the two types of wh-words in various constructions. It is not clear how they can account for the contrast in grammaticality. My intuition rather says the grammaticality improves. 7. The present research. *Twu salam isang-i nwukwu-lul chotayhayss-ni? two man more-NOM who-ACC invited-QM ‘Who did more than two men invite?’ *Se salam miman-i nwukwu-lul chotayhayss-ni? three man less-NOM who-ACC invited-QM ‘Who did less than three men invite?’ b. I would like to express my special thanks to the anonymous reviewers of Lingua for all their valuable feedbacks on this paper. One can certainly see their influence 37 An anonymous reviewer reports that the grammaticality does not improve in (49) even when the indefinite wh-word is replaced with way ‘why’. given the proposed two ways of scope taking of in situ wh-words: in situ interpretation of indefinite wh-words via unselective binding by the question morpheme versus movement of way ‘why’. I would like to close the section by noting that the contrast in grammaticality between (49) and (50) again poses a nontrivial problem to Beck and Kim (1997). ?Taypwupwun-uy salam-i nwukwu-lul chotayhayss-ni? most-POSS man-NOM who-ACC invited-QM ‘Who did most of the men invite?’ a. . if on the right track. contrary to the prediction of the present proposal. If our analysis is one the right track. although it satisfies the constraint in (18). the present research claims that the intervention effect is not a movement but scope phenomenon. Conclusion The intervention effect in Korean wh-questions can receive a natural account. the slightly deviant status of (50) is attributed to the fact that QM as the wh-operator in the matrix clause and the indefinite wh-word in the embedded clause that serves as the restriction of the wh-operator are separated by the intervening QP in the embedded clause at LF.2074 (49) Y. whose LF is given in (51). (49) will also improve in grammaticality when embedded. may lead us to a better understanding of the nature of the intervention effect in other wh-in-situ languages typologically akin to Korean.

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