IntroLFG2

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Published on November 22, 2007

Author: Alohomora

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Empty category phenomena in LFG:  Empty category phenomena in LFG Nigel Vincent University of Manchester Caveat:  Caveat This presentation was prepared for use at the LFG Winter School held at the University of Canterbury, 4-8 July 2004. It was designed to follow on from the foregoing presentation by Kersti Börjars. Feel free to make use of it but please acknowledge the source. Properties of LFG:  Properties of LFG Non-derivational Parallel correspondence Monotonic Therefore LFG eschews::  Therefore LFG eschews: movement the (consequent) use of empty categories the (consequent) use of uninterpretable features (in particular Case and EPP) Instead, new analytical tools consistent with LFG premisses need to be found A typology of empty categories:  A typology of empty categories The treatment of ‘pro-drop’:  The treatment of ‘pro-drop’ Italian: (Memo) canta canta f-structure for canta ‘(s)he sings’:  f-structure for canta ‘(s)he sings’ English non-pro-drop:  English non-pro-drop English: Bill sings vs *sings sings Control and raising:  Control and raising ‘Missing’ subject relatable to matrix verb ‘Missing’ subject is a semantic argument of both verbs = control (aka equi) e.g. Bill tried to dance ‘missing’ subject only a semantic argument of the infinitival verb = raising e.g. Bill seemed to dance equi vs raising:  equi vs raising Equi traditionally handled via a construction specific empty category with no overt analogue, viz PRO Bill tried [PRO to dance] Raising handled via movement [[e] seemed [Bill to dance] Obligatory (OC) vs non-obligatory (NOC) control:  Obligatory (OC) vs non-obligatory (NOC) control Bill tried to dance:  Bill tried to dance to dance requires a verb to introduce it introducing verb is in the next clause up therefore introducing verb c-commands inf. no split antecedence, so: *Bill tried (*for him and Sally) to dance f-control = OC:  f-control = OC ‘Let us first observe that Williams’ “obligatory control” corresponds to our functional control. That is, the central properties that Williams takes to be characteristic of obligatory control follow from our theory of functional control.’ (Bresnan 1982: 350) Functional control:  Functional control Involves ‘structure sharing between SUBJ of matrix verb and SUBJ of embedded verb Structure sharing achieved by means of a new type of function, namely the ‘open function’ XCOMP COMP vs XCOMP:  COMP vs XCOMP COMP Bill said that Sally appointed Sue COMP XCOMP Bill persuaded Sally to appoint Sue OBJ XCOMP Lex entries: say, try, persuade:  Lex entries: say, try, persuade say ‘say <(SUBJ) (COMP)>’ try ‘try <(SUBJ) (XCOMP)>’ persuade ‘persuade <(SUBJ) (OBJ) (XCOMP)’ Lexical Rule of f-control:  Lexical Rule of f-control For any lexical form: a) XCOMP SUBJ = OBJ if present otherwise b) XCOMP SUBJ = SUBJ F-structure for try:  F-structure for try try ‘try <(SUBJ), (XCOMP)>’ (XCOMP SUBJ) = (SUBJ):  try ‘try <(SUBJ), (XCOMP)>’ (XCOMP SUBJ) = (SUBJ) ‘exhaustive’: same info referred to in two places in f-structure, so split antecedence impossible ‘local’: verb can only subcategorise for a clause contained in its own immediate constituent ‘obligatory’: control pattern can only be introduced via lexical entry of controlling verb ‘c-command’ (or f-command): controlling verb one clause up and thus subject/object/indirect object necessarily c-commands controllee persuade vs promise:  persuade vs promise ‘persuade <(SUBJ), (OBJ), (XCOMP)>’ (XCOMP SUBJ) = (OBJ) ‘promise <(SUBJ), (OBJ), (XCOMP)>’ (XCOMP SUBJ) = (SUBJ) Lexical form for seem:  Lexical form for seem seem ‘seem < (XCOMP) > (SUBJ) (XCOMP SUBJ) = (SUBJ) NB: (SUBJ) outside the angle brackets shows it is syntactically but not semantically selected F-structure for seem:  F-structure for seem believe:  believe ‘believe <(SUBJ), (XCOMP)> (OBJ)’ XCOMP SUBJ = OBJ a-control vs f-control:  a-control vs f-control Keep + –ing:  Keep + –ing Susan discussed visiting Fred (anaphoric) ii) Susan kept visiting Fred (functional) Slide26:  Passive: Visiting Fred was discussed/*kept by Susan Cleft: It was visiting Fred that Susan discussed/*kept Slide27:  ‘Tough’: Visiting Fred is unpleasant for Susan to discuss/*keep Gen subj: Susan discussed/*kept our visiting Fred Mechanism of a-control:  Mechanism of a-control Add the optional equation ( GF PRED) = ‘pro’ to the lexical entry of a non-finite verb To visit Fred will annoy Susan:  To visit Fred will annoy Susan Obviation: English want vs Italian volere:  Obviation: English want vs Italian volere Bill wanted to visit Fred Bill wanted Susan to visit Fred Memo voleva visitare Federico Bill wanted visit.INF Fred Memo voleva [che Susanna visitasse Federico] Bill wanted [that Susan visited Fred] Wh-movement:  Wh-movement Involves link between a ‘filler’ and a ‘gap’ What did Bill put [e] in the box? filler gap Unboundedness vs islands:  Unboundedness vs islands Potentially infinite distance between filler and gap Who did Bill want Sally to try to invite [e]? Yet certain close dependencies are not OK *What did Bill believe the report Sally said? (Complex NP Constraint) Wh-constructions: the challenge for LFG:  Wh-constructions: the challenge for LFG Can we avoid recourse to empty categories? The construction seems to refer to categories/positions not functions: a) all categories except VP front b) categories move to a specific c- structure position DFs vs GFs:  DFs vs GFs A functional account needs to identify a function for the wh-element: TOPIC: old information; relatives; topics FOCUS: new information; questions SUBJ: grammaticalized DF; default topic Functional dependencies: outside-in:  Functional dependencies: outside-in Functional dependencies: inside-out:  Functional dependencies: inside-out Functional uncertainty:  Functional uncertainty The infinite set of possible dependencies requires a means of selecting the right one for the sentence in question (DF) = ( GF* GF) (Outside-in) (GF) = ((GF* DF) (Inside-out) Outside-in functional uncertainty:  Outside-in functional uncertainty filler-gap relation expressed solely at f-structure with no empty c-structure Island constraints statable as conditions on the path from filler function to gap function ( DF) = ({COMP, XCOMP}* (GF–COMP)) Off-path constraints:  Off-path constraints ( DF) = ({COMP, XCOMP}* (GF)) Only COMP and XCOMP can intervene between filler and gap So Complex NP Constraint follows since NPs cannot be COMPs or XCOMPs Inside out functional uncertainty (IOFU):  Inside out functional uncertainty (IOFU) there is an empty node in c-structure the empty node is annotated with the equation: (GF) = ((GF* DF) provided there is a legitimate path from the gap to the required focus or topic function the equations can be solved and the structure is allowed Why IOFU?:  Why IOFU? f- /c-structure correspondences weak crossover effects wh- in situ and scope Canonical structural realization:  Canonical structural realization SUBJ and OBJ must be realized as nominals (NP or DP) (Bresnan 2001) a) That he would be late, I never would have believed. (That he would be late = COMP) b) That he would be late was widely predicted. (That he would be late = ?) c) Under the bed, we said they would find him. (Under the bed = ADJ) d) Under the bed is where they found him. (Under the bed = ?) CSR (cont.):  CSR (cont.) If that he would be late in (b) is COMP, and if under the bed in (d) is PP, then CSR is violated. So, assume a null expletive subject [e] Weak Crossover:  Weak Crossover Who does his mother like [e]? (who ≠ his) f-precedence: a piece of f-structure f f-precedes a piece of f-structure g if the rightmost node associated with f precedes the rightmost node associated with g. A pronominal P cannot f-precede a constituent on which P is referentially dependent.

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