Article published in:Romance Languages and Linguistic Theory 2013: Selected papers from 'Going Romance' Amsterdam 2013
Edited by Enoch O. Aboh, Jeannette Schaeffer and Petra Sleeman
[Romance Languages and Linguistic Theory 8] 2015
► pp. 119–158
On the syntax of datives in unaccusative configurations
The paper examines a class of Dative-Nominative psych constructions based on light unaccusative verbs. Unaccusative Datives contrast with Datives in ditransitive structures. One sharp difference is the obligatory presence of the Dative clitic, while the clitic is optional in ditransitive structures. A second difference regards nominalizations. Dative constructions of ditransitives permit nominalizations, but the nominalization of unaccusative psych constructions is impossible. We analyze these unaccusative configurations as applicative constructions, with the Dative licensed by an expletive applicative head. The Dative merges as a Goal/Location in a position where it cannot value case. The clitic is required to pull the Dative out of the vP, to a position where case may be valued. The clitic also contributes a Person feature, so that the Experiencer interpretation of this Dative is derivationally constructed. Nominalization is impossible because the functional structure of the nominalization is not rich enough to accommodate the obligatory clitic.
Published online: 02 December 2015
Cited by 1 other publications
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