Children's understanding of dou in Chinese

Peng Zhou

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contribution


The quantifier dou (roughly corresponding to English 'all') in Chinese has been the topic of much discussion in the theoretical literature. This study investigated children's knowledge of this quantifier, using a new methodological technique, which we dubbed Question-Statement Task. Two questions were discussed: (i) whether young Mandarin-speaking children know that dou is a universal quantifier that quantifies over the elements to its left, and (ii) whether they know that dou can quantify over wh-words. It was found that by age four Mandarin-speaking children already have the relevant knowledge. These results reflect early availability of adult-like linguistic knowledge of dou-quantification.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of GLOW in Asia VII 2009
EditorsRajat Mohanty, Mythili Menon
Place of PublicationHyderabad, India
PublisherEFL University Press
Number of pages10
ISBN (Print)9789380425016
Publication statusPublished - 2009
EventGLOW in Asia (7th : 2009) - Hyderabad, India
Duration: 25 Feb 200927 Feb 2009


ConferenceGLOW in Asia (7th : 2009)
CityHyderabad, India

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    Zhou, P. (2009). Children's understanding of dou in Chinese. In R. Mohanty, & M. Menon (Eds.), Proceedings of GLOW in Asia VII 2009 (pp. 87-96). Hyderabad, India: EFL University Press.