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Grammatiska och didaktiska perspektiv på partikeln le i rikskinesiska – en jämförande studie


  • Maria Mörnerud

Summary, in English

The recent addition of Modern Standard Chinese (MSC) as an elective language in Swedish elementary and high school ('Moderna Språk') has brought the teaching of MSC particle le to the fore. Le occurs either affixed to a verb (le1) or as a sentence-final particle (le2) and is a frequently used grammatical device in MSC with a great number of various functions. At the same time, coexistent and differing theoretical explanations of le makes the choice of its teaching content a pedagogical conundrum.

Motivated by the need to find a functional teaching solution of le for the Swedish Chinese as a Second Language (CSL) classroom, this MA-thesis compares the teaching content concern­ing le (le1 and le2) recommended by two Chinese educators of CSL teachers, with differing linguistic explanations, mainly the opposing Li & Thompson (1981) (L&T) and Ljungqvist Arin (2003) (L.A.). While L&T regard le1 and le2 as two separate particles indicating perfec­tivity (le1) versus Currently Relevant State (le2), L.A. sees them as fundamentally one parti­cle (LE), a discourse marker with the general meaning of BOUNDARY.

The study uses a qualitative approach. The didactic material was first collected during a field study at a teacher's training course in China in the early 2010's ('Sommarkursen'). Subse­quently, the three main sources (field material, L&T and L.A.) were compared. Since their theoretical explanations of le differed, factual samples of MSC native speakers' production from respective source served as a lowest common denominator for the analysis.

Results of the study show how the Chinese educators included some but not all of the central uses of le (as listed in L&T and L.A.). Most notably, they excluded le used with achievement verbs (ACH), as well as (overly) focused on le not being a past-time marker. The analysis also showed instances of overlapping use of le1 and le2 in the field material, despite them be­ing presented as separate entities. Results thus also give slight support for L.A'.'s interpreta­tion of le as one particle (LE).
The thesis ends with some thoughts on how the results could be used in the Swedish CSL-classroom.


  • Master's Programme: Language and Linguistics
  • Kinesiska






Examensarbete för masterexamen (Två år)


  • Languages and Literatures


  • Particle le
  • le1
  • le2
  • LE
  • Chinese
  • Modern Standard Chinese
  • MSC
  • Mandarin Chinese
  • MC
  • Chinese grammar
  • MSC grammar
  • MC grammar
  • Mandarin grammar
  • Chinese linguistics
  • MSC linguistics
  • MC linguistics
  • Mandarin linguistics
  • Chinese didactics
  • MSC didactics
  • MC didactics
  • Mandarin didactics
  • Chinese as a Second Language
  • CSL
  • CSL teaching
  • CSL didactics
  • Chinese as a Foreign Language
  • CFL
  • CFL teaching
  • CFL didactics
  • Li & Thompson (1981)
  • Ljungqvist Arin (2003)
  • Moderna Språk
  • Kinesiska 1
  • Kinesiska 2
  • Kinesiska 3
  • Kinesiska 4
  • Kinesiska 5
  • Kinesiska 6
  • Kinesiska 7
  • Kinesiska
  • Kinesisk grammatik
  • Kinesisk lingvistik


  • Michael Schoenhals
  • Ivo Spira