Nominal subextractions and the structure of NPs in Serbian and English
The thesis argues for a remnant movement analysis of constructions referred to in the literature as Left Branch Extractions (LBE). The best known cases of LBE, or what I term split-XPs, are found in Slavic languages, which allow all prenominal constituents to be separated from the noun they modify. I argue that the derivation of these constructions proceeds in two steps. First, the non-focused material is vacated out of the DP/PP in order to restrict the focus domain to the prenominal modifier. Subsequently, the remnant XP is fronted to the specifier of focus phrase. The remnant movement analysis easily tackles the problem of apparent non-constituent movement in split PPs, as well as accounts for the preservation of ordering restrictions within the DP and the observation that both parts of the split must occupy derived positions. On the theoretical side, I argue that not all movement operations can be characterized in terms of Attract feature, as standardly assumed within the Minimalist framework. In particular, I assume that the first movement step is brought about by the properties of the source position, rather than by any formal requirement of the target, and correlate this with the ability of the first movement operation to circumvent islands. Finally, I show that crosslinguistic variation regarding the possibility of extracting left branch constituents cannot be reduced to the presence vs absence of a determiner phrase, as suggested in previous analyses.Interestingly, Bulgarian which differs from other Slavic languages in having overt articles, seems to allow the constructions in question, thus suggesting that the locus of parametric variation must be sought in properties other than the categorial status of noun phrases.
PublisherUniversitetet i Tromsø
University of Tromsø
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