The Korean Association for the Study of English Language and Linguistics
[ Article ]
Korea Journal of English Language and Linguistics - Vol. 20, No. 1, pp.427-449
ISSN: 1598-1398 (Print)
Print publication date 31 Mar 2020
Received 17 Aug 2020 Revised 13 Sep 2020 Accepted 22 Sep 2020

Negated Fragments: A Direct Interpretation Approach

Jong-Bok Kim
Kyung Hee University

Copyright 2020 KASELL
This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Fragment answers, involving a type of ellipsis that occurs in answers to questions, appear very frequently in dialogue in varied forms. This paper focuses on negated fragment answers including the negator not. The key question for the analysis of negated fragments (e.g., Not money) is then how to resolve their sentential meaning from incomplete syntax. There have been two main strands: deletion-based sentential and direct interpretation-based non-sentential approaches. The former seeks matching correspondences from the postulation of putative clausal sources and then allows mismatching by deletion processes. Meantime, the latter licences non-correspondences at syntax but achieves the effects of correspondences from the structured discourse interacting with syntax and semantics. This paper offers a direct interpretation approach that can avoid the pitfalls sentential approaches could encounter from the postulation of clausal sources for negated fragments.


fragment answer, deletion-based, direct interpretation, negated fragment, discourse-based


I thank three anonymous reviewers of this journal for constructive comments. I also thank Jungsoo Kim for feedback on an earlier version. All errors are mine. This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea Grant funded by the Korean Government (NRF-2017S1A2A2041092).”


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Jong-Bok, Kim, ProfessorDepartment of English Linguistics and English LiteratureKyung Hee University26 Kyungheedae-ro, Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul, KoreaTel: 02) 961-0892Email: