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ISSN : 1229-9618(Print)
ISSN : 2671-7506(Online)
Chinese Studies Vol.83 pp.129-148

The ‘Continuous’ Expression and Subjective Quantity of Korean and Chinese

Lee Sun-Hee
계명대학교 중국어중국학과 부교수


Subjective quantity is a concept in which the subjectivity of language is reflected in the category of quantity. Studies on the subjective quantities of the two languages in Korea and China have shown that spatial concepts such as “arrival”, “non arrival” and “exceed” have significant similarities in explaining subjective quantities. However, many expressions representing the concept of ‘continuous’ in both Korean and Chinese languages often indicate the meaning of subjective quantities(Subjective majority). Continuous expressions are generally used as adverbs in front of verbs, which can be divided into two ways: direct and indirect. The former is a method of expressing the meaning of ‘continuous’ directly through vocabulary, and the latter is a method of expressing the meaning of ‘continuous’ on the contrary by denying the meaning of ‘discontinuous’. Both types of vocabulary exist in a wide variety of Korean and Chinese languages. The direct metaphor of [continuous-many] and the increase in the density of events and actions due to continuous expression can be thought of as the cause of the continuous expression representing the subjective majority.