The syntactic and semantic roots of floating quantification
Author(s)Fitzpatrick, Justin Michael
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Linguistics and Philosophy.
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Through the study of floating quantifiers in a variety of languages, I demonstrate that floating quantification is not a uniform phenomenon and outline a series of puzzles that force us to adopt a two-part analysis. I argue that certain floating quantifiers are related to their nominal associate by syntactic transformation (the stranding approach, Sportiche 1988; Miyagawa 1989) and that others are related only semantically (the adverbial approach, Dowty and Brody 1984; Bobaljik 1995; Doetjes 1997). Evidence for this split comes from the syntactic distribution of these elements within and across languages and from two other points of difference. First, I show that each type of floating quantifier imposes a different restriction on the movement of its nominal associate. An adverbial floating quantifier restricts its associate to A-movement, while a stranded floating quantifier restricts its associate to A'-movement. Furthermore, these two classes of quantifiers divide along semantic lines: Adverbial floating quantifiers have exhaustive semantics, while stranded adnominal floating quantifiers are non-exhaustive. The analysis developed here provides an explanation for these syntactic and semantic differences.(cont.) The syntactic behavior is linked to the structural make-up of the two types of elements and to more general syntactic principles. I propose that quantifier stranding can only arise through A'-movement and that this restriction reflects a general ban on subphrasal extraction through A-movement. I suggest that this difference in locality conditions has roots in deeper differences between A- and A'-movement. My analysis of adverbial floating quantifier structure draws on Doetjes's (1997) analysis of adverbial floating quantifiers as containing a possibly null pronominal element. I extend this analysis to treat a variety of characteristics found with adverbial floating quantifiers, including agreement patterns, co-occurrence with pronouns, and locality conditions. The presence of this null pronominal is also argued to account for the observed A-movement restriction by disallowing cross-over via A'-movement. Thus the behavior of floating quantifiers can be used as a tool for the investigation of differences among movement types. The semantic differences that exist between types of floating quantifiers are tied to the syntax of partitivity. I argue that quantifier stranding can only arise via a partitive structure and that only non-exhaustive elements are eligible for this structure.(cont.) On the other hand, only exhaustive elements can take part in the structure that is required for adverbial quantifier float. The analysis not only provides a solution to the puzzle of floating quantification cross-linguistically, but raises other more general issues. In particular, the present analysis forces us to reevaluate the interplay of A- and A'-movement in a derivation. I show that in some cases a phrase that is generally assumed to undergo both A- and A'-movement in fact undergoes direct A'-movement. Thus floating quantification provides fertile ground for the investigation of differences and interactions between these two types of displacement. The results presented here should also provide a model for the analysis of other types of split constituency across languages.
Thesis (Ph. D.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Linguistics and Philosophy, 2006.Includes bibliographical references (p. 219-230).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Linguistics and Philosophy.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Linguistics and Philosophy.