Article published in:Rightward Movement in a Comparative Perspective
Edited by Gert Webelhuth, Manfred Sailer and Heike Walker
[Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today 200] 2013
► pp. 145–172
Constraints on relative clause extraposition in English
An experimental investigation
In this paper, I present a psycholinguistic experiment on relative clause extraposition in English. In the theoretical literature, it has frequently been claimed that the acceptability of relative clause extraposition decreases when the antecedent NP of the relative clause is definite (the definiteness restriction) and when the main verb of the sentence is not a verb of appearance (the predicate restriction). However, the literature also contains conflicting judgments, suggesting the need to test the acceptability of relative clause extraposition experimentally. Using the method of thermometer judgments (Featherston 2007) to elicit acceptability judgments, I provide evidence that objectively and reliably corroborates the definiteness restriction and the predicate restriction. Additionally, I show that the grammatical function of the antecedent NP has an effect on the acceptability of relative clause extraposition only when verbs other than verbs of appearance are used in the sentence.
Published online: 16 July 2013
Cited by 2 other publications
FRANCIS, ELAINE J. & LAURA A. MICHAELIS
Poschmann, Claudia & Michael Wagner
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