Empathy Perspective and Word order in Japanese and Englis

Masatoshi TABUKI

The following sentences cannot be accounted for by Kuno's (1987) Empathy Theory which resulted from his 'camera angle' theory.
(1) a. チンパンジーが人間と話している。
'A Chimpanzee is talking with a man.'
b. ?人間がチンパンジーと話している。
'A man is talking with a.chimpanzee.'
(2) a. 子供がトラックにひかれた。
'A kid was run over by a truck.'
b. ? トラックが子供をひいた。
'A truck ran over a kid.'
According to Humanness Hierarchy by Kuno and Kaburaki (1977), which claims 'Human>Animate Nonhuman' hierarchy, the sentence (1b) should be acceptable and the sentence (1a) unacceptable, but in fact the case is reversed. On the other hand, Kuno's theory (1987) claims that in passive constructions empathy perspective is always placed on the new subject. This theory cannot explain the acceptability of sentence (2a) and the unacceptability of sentence (2b). It seems that sociolinguistic or psycholinguistic ideas should be employed to solve this kind of problem.
The points I want to make clear at this presentation are as the following;
(a) What factors other than 'empathy' are involved in sentences number (1) and (2)?
(b) How do those factors affect word order in Japanese and English ?
(c) How can we improve or revise Kuno's so called 'camera angle' approach to Empathy Perspective Theory ?
Finally I propose the emphasized word order with 'surprise' implication, which has turned out to be mainly characteristie of the Japanese language. The existence of word order of that kind will be substantiated by the actual data obtained. Lastly the observed phenomena will be theorized in relation with Kuno's (1987) Empathy Theory.
For the purpose of investigating the properties of NP 1 and NP 2 in terms of word order, reciprocal verb constructions and passive constructions will be taken into consideration.