Article published in:Romance Languages and Linguistic Theory: Selected papers from ‘Going Romance’ Amsterdam 2007
Edited by Enoch Oladé Aboh, Elisabeth van der Linden, Josep Quer and Petra Sleeman
[Romance Languages and Linguistic Theory 1] 2009
► pp. 179–200
Subject doubling in European Portuguese dialects
The role of impersonal se
This paper discusses a subject doubling construction found in European Portuguese dialects where the impersonal clitic se is doubled by a strong pronoun/DP. The availability of subject doubling is explained under the hypothesis that dialectal se escapes the Case filter because it is .-incomplete (plural, but person-less). Se and its doubler begin as a single constituent (a “big DP”); later, the clitic se head-moves to T while the doubling pronoun/DP takes one of the positions available to EP subjects (preverbal or post-verbal). This analysis rightly predicts that: (i) there is no fixed word order between se and its doubler, (ii) the doubling pronoun/DP controls subject-verb agreement, (iii) the interpretation of the double subject is compositional (the doubler establishes the inclusive or exclusive reading of impersonal se). The analysis also enlightens why the clitic se can behave as the universal plural anaphora or the expletive subject of impersonal predicates in some dialects.
Published online: 19 November 2009
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