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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter Mouton February 11, 2014

Smuggling the subject across the object in Control

Jacek Witkoś EMAIL logo
From the journal Folia Linguistica


The article presents a formal syntactic study of the derivation of the construction involving Subject Control across an Object (SCaO). In an initial part, a critical review is presented of recent minimalist attempts at accounting for the SCaO phenomenon, both from the Agree-based and Movement-based perspectives. As each of these accounts faces the problem of undoing the effect of Chomsky’s (1995) Minimal Link Condition, the article explores the strategies employed by them. These involve Richards’s (1998) Principle of Minimal Compliance, encapsulation of the nominal object within a silent PP, late merge of the nominal object, and reversing the order of the complements of the promise-type verb in the base. Eventually, a solution based on smuggling is proposed, whereby at a certain stage of the derivation a larger container phrase is moved around the intervener and subsequently a smaller sub-constituent is launched from within it. Among the syntactocentric solutions to the problem at hand, the new smuggling alternative appears to avoid, at a relatively low price, the empirical and conceptual pitfalls which the other accounts have not been able to steer clear of.

Published Online: 2014-02-11
Published in Print: 2013-10

© 2014 by Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co.

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