23/10/2007 Computer Science Linguistics
DOI: 10.1007/S11049-007-9023-Z SemanticScholar ID: 170892677 MAG: 2160417287

French dislocation without movement

Publication Summary

This paper revisits the classic tests for movement that have been proposed in the literature on dislocated structures, arguing that discourse factors have a significant impact on the outcome of such tests. On this basis, French dislocation is shown to be a syntactically unified phenomenon involving both Left- and Right-Dislocation, irrespective of whether it is resumed by a clitic or a non-clitic element. The epitome of interface phenomena, French dislocation is argued to be the output of the interaction between syntax and the discourse component, requiring only a very limited contribution of narrow syntax: all that is required is that the dislocated element be merged by adjunction to a Discourse Projection (defined as a maximal projection with root properties). No agreement or checking of a designated (e.g. topic) feature is necessary, hence no syntactic movement of any sort need be postulated. The so-called resumptive element is argued to be a full-fledged pronoun rather than a true syntactic resumptive. The relation between the dislocated element and its resumptive is captured in terms of discourse coreference. The core syntactic and interpretive properties of left- and right-dislocation are shown to be identical; differences between the two configurations are shown to derive straightforwardly from the properties of the two sides of the clause periphery.

CAER Authors

Avatar Image for Cécile De Cat

Prof. Cécile De Cat

University of Leeds - Professor of Linguistics

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