Judgments on wh-scope interpretations in Japanese like Subjacency effects and scope erasure effect of long-distance scrambling are notoriously unstable but have prevailed in the literature. Deguchi and Kitagawa (2002) and Ishihara (2002) claim, however, that these judgments arose from negligence of proper attention to the prosody involved in wh-questions. In this talk, I will attempt to clarify how variations among speakers arise and why one scope interpretation is preferred over another in certain constructions by paying close attention to prosody and its interaction with sentence processing, thereby emphasizing how important it is in syntactic research to take these factors into consideration. (The research to be presented has been developed in collaboration with Janet Dean Fodor at CUNY Graduate Center.)REFERENCES
- Deguchi, Masanori and Yoshihisa Kitagawa. 2002. Prosody and Wh-questions, Masako Hirotani ed. In Proceedings of the Thirty-second Annual Meeting of the North-Eastern Linguistic Society, 73-92. GLSA, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
- Ishihara, Shinichiro. 2002. Invisible but Audible Wh-scope Marking: Wh-constructions and Deaccenting in Japanese. In Proceedings of the Twenty-first West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics , 180-193. Cascadilla Press.