Jounchul Jun

Contrastivity in Korean with Reference to Hungarian  


The paper will discuss the functions of contrast represented by the Korean marker 'nun', which corresponds to Japanese 'wa' very closely. It has been widely accepted that 'nun' is either a topic marker or a contrast marker, but there have been disagreements on which is more basic between them. On the other hand, it has been argued that the contrast marker 'nun' represents only a contrastive topic but not a contrastive focus. In this paper I will show that contrast and the information structure such as topic or focus are orthogonal in Korean, and that 'nun' represents a focal contrast as well as a topical contrast, which would mean that the category of contrast in Korean is more strongly grammaticalized.

The paper assumes that contrast is invoked by a strategy in which a super question is composed of a set of subordinate questions, arguing that there are two types of strategy, a strategy from conjunction and a strategy from inclusive disjunction, and that the two types of contrast, i.e. a topical contrast and a focal contrast should be distinguished. The four evidence will be given for separating the two types of contrast: topichood/focushood, substitution by a case marker, the difference of categories involved, or scalar implicature.