By Julia Herschensohn
Adopting the theoretical framework of the minimalist application, this research of syntactic obstacles on supplement configuration investigates the hyperlink among thematic exterior arguments and case. utilizing facts from pronominal, mental experiencer, and inalienable buildings, it argues that either accusative and dative are structural instances in French and that this duality is mirrored in a parallel restrict on argument projection. Larson’s unmarried supplement speculation, which permits a greatest of 2 inner arguments, offers the theoretical justification for this concept. The trying out flooring for the binary speculation is a gaggle of nonthematic topic structures concerning undative in addition to unaccusative verbs, linking, based on Burzio’s generalization, case suspension and shortage of an inner argument. The research of those structures and people concerning partitive case offers not just a theoretically major contribution to our figuring out of grammar, but additionally a inspired cause of a couple of empirical difficulties in French.
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Additional info for Case Suspension and Binary Complement Structure in French
B Ces jupes ont été vendues. "These skirts were sold". c IL a été vendu beaucoup de jupes. "There were many skirts sold". d IL en a été vendu beaucoup. "There were a lot of them sold". e *IL les a été vendues. "There were them sold". ( 18) a Ces jupes se sont bien vendues. "These skirts sold well". [middle voice] b IL s' est vendu beaucoup de jupes. "There were many skirts sold". c IL s'en I *les est [beaucoup] vendu. "There were [lots] of them/them sold". Vendre is an accusative Case assigner whose accusative Case is suspended in passive and middle se in (17)-(18).
B Paul considère Marie intelligente. Paul la considère intelligente. "Paul considers Mary / her intelligent". (ii) a Paul en fait courir plusieurs. "Paul makes several of them run". b Paul en considère certains intelligents. "Paul considers some of them intelligent". 18 Lasnik notes a similar phenomenon in Turkish pointed out by Enç (1991): "Specific objects are accusative, whereas nonspecifics have no overt Case marker" (Lasnik 1992:398). The feature [definite] is the crucial distinction between accusative and partitive in French, as the object clitic diagnostic shows.
8 Systemically the value of a binary limit can be demonstrated by a brief discussion of the tenet of binary branching. Kayne (1984:Chapter 7) argues convincingly that structural representation of syntactic sequences must be limited to binary branching. He shows that only binary (or no) branching of syntactic configurations produces what he terms "unambiguous paths". Kayne (1984:131) points out that such a direct link between two nodes is necessary to the interpretation of anaphoric relations: "An anaphor that falls under the binding principles must be connected to its antecedent by an unambiguous path".