AW: AW: SLASH propagation vs. internal merge: Rewind

Tibor Kiss tibor at linguistics.ruhr-uni-bochum.de
Wed Jun 8 05:19:59 EST 2005


Hi,

I am afraid that my second email was not clear enough. Let's try to clarify
some of the issues Carl's recent email raised. I will call the HPSG-94
treatment of SLASH only containing LOCAL information as the HPSG-TM.

> You had asked for examples of what follows from the hypothesis that
> SLASH values are _local_. The (putative) nonexistence of such
> languages is an example.  If such languages are suddenly discovered,
> the hypothesis would be falsified.

Correct, but I wasn't after a falsification of the HPSG-TM. I was looking
for data possibly falsifying the CTM.

> There is a very extensive cross-linguistic literature about the conditions
> under which (so-called) reflexive interpretations are affected/constrained
by
> not-strictly-syntactic factors. These factors are (1) exceedingly complex,
> and (2) vary considerably from language to language. The story HPSG-94
> told about English reflexives is simplistic -- see Pollard
> and Xue 2001 (in Syntax & Semantics 33 for a refinement). But I don't
think you
> can just say that, as you do, that "the _i-coindexation should be
> blocked in the majority of cases in other languages" -- you have to go
> language by language and see what factors, both syntactic and
> nonsyntactic, are involved.

Many languages show picture-NP-reflexives and a breakdown of 'complementary
distribution' with pronouns WITHOUT showing any sign of
exemption/logophoricity. It is not sufficient to say: we have a syntactic
binding theory and some kind of exception to it and in the latter case,
exemption jumps in and makes the day. The most important point is that we
lose any plausible characteristic definition of the notion _anaphor_ (which
should be something like 'syntactic dependent') if we proceed this way.

In general, while discussion BT is something which I always like, it does
not lead to a conclusion concerning CTM vs. HPSG-TM, too many moving targets
here ...

>   [3] [The book]_k,  [[without even reading _k]_j, [I don't know [[how
many
>   reports]_i [Kim [[filed _i] _j]]]]]
>
> Not sure what you are referring to here. (3) sounds like gibberish to me,
though.

It is gibberish, absolutely. But assume that we block *[[Without even
reading _k]_j, I don't know [how many reports]_i Kim filed _i _j] by not
allowing the _k-SLASH dependency to appear at the root clause. How do we
block the topicalization out of the fronted phrase in the gibberish [3]?

> No, that was the point of other examples such as
>
>  Without bodily restraining him, how do you think we can keep Robin
>  away from the chipotle muffins?
>
>  Using nothing but Extensionality and Empty Set, how many of
> these crucial
>  lemmas do you think we're going to be able to prove?

Do you strictly speaking assume that both 'moved' phrases come out of the
same local clause, i.e.:

[W/o bodily restraining him]_i how_j do you think [we can keep Robin away
from the CM _j _i]


Best

T.



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