Multi-Faceted Aspects of Reconstruction in Korean Scrambling

Myung-Kwan Park 1 ,
Author Information & Copyright
1Dongguk University
Corresponding Author: Myung-Kwan Park Professor Department of English Dongguk University 30, Phildong-ro 1-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul, 04620, Korea E-mail:

ⓒ Copyright 2021 Language Education Institute, Seoul National University. This is an Open-Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Received: Mar 01, 2021 ; Revised: Apr 03, 2021 ; Accepted: Apr 07, 2021

Published Online: Apr 30, 2021


This paper investigates reconstruction in Korean long-distance scrambling. Saito (1989) argues that in long-distance scrambling, a wh-phrase is undone or radically reconstructed to its underlying position. In this paper, adapting Keine and Poole’s (2018) analysis for the reconstruction of long-distance scrambled universal noun phrases (NPs) and indefinite NPs in Hindi-Urdu, we use Binding Condition (C) as a probe to test the validity of Saito’s (ibid.) thesis regarding the reconstruction of such NPs as well as wh-phrases in Korean. We show that both universal quantificational phrases and wh-phrases in Korean have their quantificational and wh-licensing element/features reconstructed, with the rest of the parts staying in their surface positions and thus being outside the scope of Condition (C). On the contrary, all the indefinite NPs in the language at issue can optionally undergo radical/total reconstruction, thus interacting with Condition (C).

Keywords: reconstruction; undoing, Condition (C); scope interpretation; wh- licensing



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