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EALing 2006


Arguments for Remnant IP Movement in the syntax of Romance Questions
Jean-Yves Pollock (univ. Marne-la-Vallée)

25 septembre 2006

The goal of this lecture is to present of some of the many arguments that work by Nicola Munaro, Cecilia Poletto, Richard Kayne and myself has recently adduced in favor of the idea that Romance wh- syntax and subject inversion, when looked at from a comparative per¬spective, require that Remnant Movement replace not only much covert movement of the GB tradition but also (some) head movement analyses.
The empirical domains I will make use of to support these claims will be:
A. the wh- syntax of some Northern Italian Dialects, in particular Bellunese (cf. “ Eppur si Muove! on comparing French, Italian and Bellunese Wh-move¬ment ” C. Poletto, N. Munaro & J-Y Pollock, in Linguistic Variation Yearbook, vol 1, n° 1, 147-180, 2001, John Benjamins, Amsterdam & Philadelphia, “ On the Left Periphery of some Romance Wh-questions ” (avec Cecilia Poletto, Université de Padoue), in The structure of CP and IP, L. Rizzi (ed) p. 251-296, 2004, Oxford University Press.
B. Stylistic Inversion in French (cf. “ New thoughts on Stylistic Inversion ” (avec R. Kayne, NYU) in Subject Positions in Romance & The Theory of Uni¬versal Grammar, 107-162. Oxford University Press, 2001.)
C. Subject clitic inversion and Complex inversion in French (cf. “ Subject clitics, Subject Clitic Inversion and Complex Inversion”, in The companion to syntax, Martin Everaert & H. van Riemsjik (eds), volume 4, 599- 657, Blackwell, 2006.
If the work reported on in this presentation is right, Romance provides as much evidence in favor of Remnant Movement as the Germanic languages do (cf. Den Besten & Webelhuth (1987), (1990), Koopman & Szabolcsi (2000)). Since (IP) Remnant Movement is a natural computation in the minimalist program --Chomsky’s (2001) ‘internal merge’ affects constituents, displacement of constituents which subconstituents have vacated at previous stages in the derivation therefore cannot be avoided--, extra machinery would be needed to ban Remnant Movement, which might be required if languages never made use of it; since Germanic and Romance most emphatically do, that would be an extremely ill-advised step.
Prerequisites: basic knowledge of syntactic theory

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Jean-Yves Pollock Jean-Yves Pollock (univ. Marne-la-Vallée)
professeur Université de Marne-la-Vallée & UMR 7023

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