Article published in:Theoretical Approaches to Linguistic Variation
Edited by Ermenegildo Bidese, Federica Cognola and Manuela Caterina Moroni
[Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today 234] 2016
► pp. 177–202
On the variable nature of head final effects in German and English
An interface account
The paper investigates head final effects (HF-effects) in German and English and argues that the syntactic configuration that underlies them gives rise to three different types of violations in the interfaces. It is shown that HF-effects are either morphological or prosodic in nature. A diagnostics – morphological versus syntactic displacement – is established that allows to connect HF-effects to their relevant interface conditions. The prosodic conditions on word order are then argued to be twofold: they involve a condition on heavy constituents, on the one hand, and a condition on the mapping of syntactic constituents onto prosodic constituents respecting the Strict Layer Hypothesis, on the other hand. Finally, I argue that a pure syntactic condition, like the Final-over-Final Constraint proposed by Biberauer, Holmberg and Roberts (2007 and 2014) is inedaquate to account for the variable nature of HF-effects.
Published online: 01 December 2016
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