Seminar für Sprachwissenschaft


My research mainly concerns syntax,  pragmatics, and discourse, through theoretical, computational, corpus, and experimental methods. The overall goal of my research is to better understand how humans process sentence and discourse, and seek the universality of these linguistic phenomena through cross-language data, as well as discern the pattern to the diachronic development of language. My ongoing work includes: 1) investigation into topic construction, discourse relations and pragmatic inference through the event-based cognitive model and computational models (the Bayesian and graph theory),which is supported by two national science funds of China ; 2) and the mapping between cognitively experimental data and (information-theoretical and word-embedding) computational data. 3) I also work on diachronic changes of linguistic phenomena (e.g. compound words, punctuation, and word concreteness etc.) through a diversity of quantitative methods.


Peer-reviewed journal articles (selected):
Sun K. 2018. Approaching the double-nominal construction in Mandarin Chinese through the semantic-cognitive interaction, Studia Linguistica, 72(3):687–724.
Sun, K. and Zhang, L.L.2018. Quantitative aspects of PDTB-style discourse relations across languages, Journal of Quantitative Linguistics,25(4):342-371.
Sun, K. and Wang, R. 2018. Frequency distributions of punctuation marks in English: Evidence from large-scale corpora, English Today (in press).
Sun, K. 2015. How the punctuation system worked in ancient Chinese texts: in comparison with European punctuation traditions [in Chinese], Studies in Chinese Languages [zhōngguó yǔwén, 中国语文],(6),563-575. This paper was reprinted by Chinese Social Science Digest,2016(2):152-153 and Linguistics and Philology (the Information Center for Social Science of Renmin University of China),2016(2):72-80.
Sun, K. 2015. The categories, functions and characteristics of the topic chain in Chinese [in Chinese], Language Teaching and Linguistic Studies[yǔyán jiāoxué yǔ yánjiū 语言教学与研究] (5):72-82. The paper was reprinted in Linguistics and Philology(the Information Center for Social Science of Renmin University of China), 2016(1):62-72 .
Sun, K. 2013. A topic-chain approach to the strategies of translating English into Chinese [in Chinese], Foreign Languages and Their Teaching [wàiyǔ yǔ wàiyǔ jiāoxué外语与外语教学], 1:70-75;
Sun, K. 2012. A study of “linguistic turn” in social science studies: The predicament, crisis and solution for social science and humanities [in Chinese]. Journal of South China University of Technology, 5, 1-10. The paper was reprinted in Social Science (General) (the Information Center for Social Science of Renmin University of China), 2013(1):21-28.
Sun, K. 2011. An investigation of English translations of terms for weapons in classic Chinese literature: A case study of two English translations of Romance of the Three Kingdoms. Translation Quarterly, 2011, 59: 51-83.

Submitted papers and manuscripts:
Sun, K., Liu, H.T and Saito, M. 2018. A probabilistic approach to event knowledge in syntactic parsing: the case of dangling contruction in Chinese and Japanese, Journal of Pragmatics (resubmitted after the revision).
Sun, K. and Baayen, H. 2018. Diachronic and quantitative analysis of English hyphenated compounds in the last two hundred years, Folia Linguistica Historica (submitted).
Sun. K, and Liu, H.T. 2018. A hypergraph approach to the complexity of zero anaphora in Chinese discourse, Language Sciences(submitted).
Sun, K. and Baayen, H. 2018. Information density and semantic vectors oppose predicating language processing : Evidence from eye-tracking data (manuscript).
Sun, K., Xiong, W.X., Liu, H. T. and Baayen, H. 2018. The evolutionary pattern of language in scientific writings: The insights from the perspectives of linguistic concreteness and relative entropy (manuscript).
Sun, K., Zhou. Y.Y., Xu, M.J. and Liu, H.T. 2018. The statistical model of discourse relations in Chinese "run-on" sentences based on the corpus of combined RST-sytle and PDTB-sytle annotation (corpus and manuscript).
Wang, R, and Sun, K. 2017. Teaching English-Chinese textual translation strategies: A topic-chain approach, Babel(submitted).

Conference proceedings papers(selected):
Sun, K. The complexity of zero anaphora in Chinese discourse, the 19th International Conference on Asian Language Processing, Suzhou, China. Oct,2015.
Sun, K. A semantic-cognitive approach to double-nominal construction in Mandarin Chinese,the 23rd Annual Conference of the International Association of Chinese Linguistics (IACI-23), Seoul, South Korea. Aug, 2015.