Recent work in Distributed Morphology, most prominently Harley (2014), argues for roots being able to take syntactic complements, which opens the door for the possibility of having syntactic features within a root’s representation – something most DM literature rejects (Embick 2015). Upon a closer inspection of the arguments presented in the literature, it is not clear whether the disagreement has an empirical underpinning, or whether it stems from the lack of methodological clarity as far as the identification of the precise nature of what constitutes a syntactic feature. This paper takes this methodological question seriously and investigates a type of derivational behavior that, in our view, provides a decisive argument for the presence of syntactic features on roots. We argue that the presence of a syntactic feature on the root can be conclusively established based on a feature’s impact on specific properties within a larger syntactic structure. Based on empirical evidence form gender agreement phenomena, we introduce a model of grammar that distinguishes roots with syntactic features from those which do not have them. We propose that such a distinction between roots will manifest itself in the timing of root insertion – roots without syntactic features are late inserted, while roots with syntactic features must be early inserted.
We propose that roots are not homogeneous when it gets to their syntactic features. While some roots don't have any syntactic features from the lexicon, other roots do. This distinction has consequences for derivational timing and properties of the extended functional domain. We argue that it also has consequences for our typology of features.
The paper proposes that degree/amount relative clauses are derived via overt Degree Phrase raising out of the CP. I show that there exist two distinct types of degree relative clauses whose properties can be deduced from the differences between the two types of DegP argued to be present in the grammar by Neelman, van de Koot & Doetjes (2004). This raises the possibility that syntactic and semantic variation between classes of relative constructions can be reduced to the type of lexical item that is raised out of the CP.
n this paper the author claims on the basis of Polish data that: (1) Sluicing does not alleviate islands, just like VP ellipsis; (2) Ellipsis is not licensed by syntactic identity (no PF, LF Islands, or trace deletion); (3) There is syntactic structure in the ellipsis site; (4) ellipsis is licensed by a recoverability condition--if there is enough information in the non-elided signal, ellipsis is acceptable, including case-mismatches, PP stranding violations, adjunct islands, etc.
This paper supports the model where VP ellipsis is licensed via de-stressing which in turn is licensed via Focus closure (Rooth 1992). However, it is also argued that we have to assume that ellipsis is preceded by the establishment of Focus/Topic relations in overt syntax. This can be done in two ways: by focusing the subject, provided a Σ head is in the numeration, or by topicalizing the VP. The first strategy gives rise to non bare-VP ellipsis, the second to bare-VP ellipsis.
In this paper I will argue that Polish auxiliary clitics provide additional evidence for adopting Rizzi’s (1997) expanded structure of the Left Periphery (LP) by arguing that auxiliary clitics are a phonological manifestation of the morphological properties of the Fin head. This will be supported by examples of auxiliary clitics demarcating Focus/Topic constructions from material within IP. Further support will come from examples where auxiliary clitics interact with LF operations like reconstruction and reflexive interpretation. However, I will also show that syntactic operations over-generate possible outputs and that we need to postulate a phonological buffer which filters syntactic output.
This work address the puzzle why VP ellipsis where the subject plus an auxiliary/modal
/negation (non bare-VP ellipsis) is not possible in relatives derived via operator
movement, whereas VP ellipsis where only the subject remains (bare-VP ellipsis) is
possible in both relatives derived via operator movement as well as head noun movement.
I will argue that Polish and Russian ellipsis data points to the generalization that VPellipsis
is essentially deletion of a topic VP.
In the first part of the thesis, I show that Polish and Russian relative clauses divide into
two types: (i) derived by head noun movement (co/cto-relatives), and (ii) derived by
operator movement and adjunction of the relative to the head noun (który/kotoryjrelatives).
In the second part, I answer why bare-VP ellipsis is only possible in co/cto-relatives, and
non bare-VP ellipsis is possible in both types of relatives. I will argue that de-stressing
and subsequent ellipsis requires the establishment of Topic and Focus in overt syntax.
The establishment of Topic/Focus interacts with relative clause formation giving rise to
the asymmetry in the availability of both types of VP ellipsis in different kinds of relative
This is a revision of my 2004 PhD thesis at Harvard
This paper discusses two types of resumptive pronouns found in Polish relative clauses: (i) adjacent resumptives and (ii) embedded resumptives. It will be argued that adjacent resumptives are truncated forms of the relative operator, whereas embedded resumptives are ‘regular’ resumptive pronouns found in other languages like Hebrew and Russian. Support for this claim will come from analyzing the differences between adjacent and embedded resumptives, and analyzing the similarities between adjacent resumptives and relative operators. Cross-linguistic data involving the interaction of relative clause formation and resumption, as well as the interaction of cliticization and resumption will provide additional support for the above claim.