frequency and agreement

Jose-Luis Mendivil Giro jlmendi at POSTA.UNIZAR.ES
Sat Apr 1 22:07:35 UTC 2000

At 17:07 -0500 31/3/00, Andrew J. Koontz-Garboden wrote:

>Is anyone aware of work that has been done on grammatical agreement and
>frequency?  For example, if a verb agrees with an object (variably) by
>(variably)adding some sort of verbal inflection, at what point is there
>generally considered to be "agreement."  Is it at 50%, 75%, 100% of the

>The particular phenomenon that I am working with is indirect object
>clitic-doubling in Spanish.  This has been called agreement by many
>working in formalist and functionalist frameworks.  I am interested in
>at what point clitic-doubling ceases to be doubling and begins to be
>grammatical agreement.  Any references to relevant literature (perhaps
>in the field of grammaticalization?) would be greatly appreciated.  If
>there is sufficent interest, I'll post a summary.

I'm afraid I have no answer to your first question.

But your second question has an interesting (for me at least )
'implicature': doubling and agreement are different things in an example
such as: _le di el balón a Peter_ . I think that, in this example, indirect
object doubling and indirect object agreement with the clitic 'le' are two
different analyses, and not two different grammatical processes. That is,
if you consider 'le'  a pronoun, there is doubling, and if you consider
'le' an agreement marker, there is agreement. It depends on the analysis,

If what you mean is the historical process, there is an interesting work by

Fontana, J. (1993): Phrase Structure and the Syntax of Clitics in the
History of Spanish. Doctoral Dissertation, Pensilvania.

and, of course, a classic you surely know:

Givón, T (1976): "Topic, Pronoun, and Grammatical Agreement", in  Li, C.,
Ed. (1976): Subject and Topic. Academic Press: New York: 149-188.

The following may be useful too (both from synchronic and diachronic points
of view):

Authier, J.M. (1992): "Arbitrary Null Object Languages in a Parametric
Theory of Linguistic Variation". In Lakarra, J.A. & J. Ortiz de Urbina
(eds.) (1992): Syntactic Theory and Basque Syntax. San Sebastián:
Gipuzkoako Foru Aldundia/Diputación Foral de Guipúzcoa: 37-52.

Cartagena, N. (1972): Sentido y estructura de las construcciones
pronominales en español, Concepcion (Chile): ICL

Guéron, J. (1991): "Le clitique se et la grammaire des pronoms indéfinis".
In J. Guéron y J-Y. Pollock (eds.): Grammaire générative et syntaxe
comparée. París: Éditions du CNRS:. 191-213.

Lehamnn, Ch. (1995): Thougts on Grammaticalization. Lincom Europa, München.

Mendikoetxea, A. (1992): "Some Speculations on the Nature of Agreement". In
Lakarra & Ortiz de Urbina, Eds. (1992): 233-264.

Monge, F. (1955): "Las frases pronominales con sentido impersonal en
español". In Archivo de Filología Aragonesa, 7, pp.: 7-102.

Suñer, M. (1988): "The Role of Agreement in Clitic-Doubled Constructions".
In Natural Language and Linguistic Theory, 6/3: 391-434.

Best regards,

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