Clefts and their Relatives
Matthew Reeve | University College London
Cleft constructions have long presented an analytical challenge for syntactic theory. This monograph argues that clefts and related constructions cannot be analysed in a straightforwardly compositional manner. Instead, it proposes that the locality conditions on modification (for example by a restrictive relative clause) must be reformulated such that they account for the apparent compositionality of DP-internal modification whilst also permitting ‘discontinuous’ modification of the type which is independently needed for constructions such as relative clause extraposition. The empirical focus of the book is on clefts in English and Russian, which have a similar interpretation but considerably divergent syntactic structures. The author argues that, despite these syntactic differences, both types of cleft are mapped to their semantic interpretations in the same manner. This monograph will be essential reading for those working on cleft constructions and copular sentences more generally, and will be of interest to those working on the syntax-semantics interface.
[Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today, 185] 2012. xiii, 223 pp.
Publishing status: Available
© John Benjamins Publishing Company
Table of Contents
Acknowledgements | pp. xi–xii
Abbreviations used in glosses | pp. xiii–xiv
Chapter 1. Introduction | pp. 1–4
Chapter 2. The syntax of English clefts | pp. 5–58
Chapter 3. Clefts and the licensing of relative clauses | pp. 59–118
Chapter 4. Clefts in Slavonic languages | pp. 119–172
Chapter 5. The syntax of specificational sentences | pp. 173–204
Chapter 6. Conclusion | pp. 205–208
References | pp. 209–222
Index | pp. 223–224
“In contrast with much of the literature, Reeve argues that clefts are evidence for a syntax/semantics mismatch. This approach sheds new light onto a classic puzzle of the syntax/semantics literature, bringing clefts in line with discontinuous modification patterns.”
Liliane Haegeman, Ghent University
“The book is a must-read for those working on the structure of complex NP constructions, as it sheds light on various linguistic patterns and attempts to provide explanations for many of them. It establishes itself as one of the most complete and in-depth analyses of the topic to date, and is likely to become necessary reading for any future researchers wishing to venture into the curiosities of cleft constructions. The author does not claim to have all the answers but he makes it clear that his work is a step forward in achieving a comprehensive understanding of this complicated grammatical construction. It is not an introductory book, as it requires a solid knowledge of several linguistic issues (as well as knowledge of generative grammar) because the material itself is complicated and the author does not give detailed definitions of the linguistic concepts discussed. However, any researcher interested in general linguistics striving to better understand cleft constructions and their relationship with other related constructions must have a copy of this volume.”
Avelino Corral Esteban, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid & Universidad Complutense de Madrid, on Linguist List 23.5297 (2012)
Cited by 21 other publications
Aravind, Athulya, Martin Hackl & Ken Wexler
Authier, J. Marc & Liliane Haegeman
den Dikken, Marcel
2019. Chapter 3. Apparent competing agreement patterns in Middle Low German non-restrictive relative clauses with a first or second person head. In The Determinants of Diachronic Stability [Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today, 254], ► pp. 39 ff.
HAEGEMAN, LILIANE, ANDRÉ MEINUNGER & ALEKSANDRA VERCAUTEREN
Hartmann, Jutta M.
Osborne, Timothy & Matthew Reeve
Reeve, Matthew & Glyn Hicks
Samo, Giuseppe & Paola Merlo
Zimmermann, Malte, Joseph P. De Veaugh-Geiss, Swantje Tönnis & Edgar Onea
2020. (Non-)exhaustivity in focus partitioning across languages. In Approaches to Hungarian [Approaches to Hungarian, 16], ► pp. 207 ff.
This list is based on CrossRef data as of 13 november 2023. Please note that it may not be complete. Sources presented here have been supplied by the respective publishers. Any errors therein should be reported to them.