Departmental Bulletin Paper Perspective in Japanese narrative : The case of the quotative TO + V-te iku construction


14pp.55 - 70 , 2016-03-01 , 東京大学大学院総合文化研究科言語情報科学専攻 , Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, the University of Tokyo
The purpose of the paper is to identify the occurrence of the quotative TO construction in relation to where it appears and how it describes perspective in a narrative. Some scholars have noticed that the Japanese quotative-like construction appears without accompanying communication or cognition verbs for its syntactic and semantic heads (e.g., takuya wa arigatou to banana o watasita “takuya passed the banana as if to say “thank you”). Using Japanese narrative data, the author found when such atypical quotative TO-constructions occur, they often precede the verbs of going. Even more interestingly, the verb iku ‘go’ is found to frequently follow the quotative-like construction as in kanzi de ‘like’. Occurring either with the TO quotative or the quotative-like phrase, the verb iku ‘go’ and its preceding quotative phrase represented perspectives that are distinct from each other. It was also pointed out that a pair of a TO clause and a verb of going frequently occurred at the end of episode boundaries, describing motion events moving away from the narrator’s perspective or the antagonist’s perspective on which the narrator placed their deictic center.

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