Ever since the start of Chinese linguistic studies, the description of the Chinese particle LE has remained elusive. The classification has evolved from a listing of sentences and the discussion of contrastive pairs to a more context and discourse-oriented analysis. The development in recent years of inferential models and situation semantics has opened the way for a renewed study of the use of the Chinese particle LE. This book discusses the Chinese data from a 'mental space' perspective and finally reveals the role so-called Chinese 'sentence LE' plays in the construction and maintenance of discourse.

chapter 1|16 pages


chapter 2|43 pages

Previous studies

chapter 5|38 pages

Action-picture stories

chapter 6|31 pages

Children’s stories

chapter 7|43 pages


chapter 8|28 pages


chapter 9|24 pages

Theoretical implications