Danny Fox

Affiliation: 
MIT
Talk Title: 
Pied Piping and Covert Movement: evidence from parasitic gap licensing
Event Type: 
Colloquium
Semester: 
Fall 2017
Date: 
Friday, December 1, 2017, 3:30 pm
Location: 
SAC 305
Pied Piping and Covert Movement: evidence from parasitic gap licensing
(joint work with Jon Nissenbaum)
 
 
In this talk we will look at pied-piping construction such as those in (1) and argue (along with von Stechow 1996) that they involve covert movement of the wh phrase (indexed 2).
 
 
(1) a. [[Whose]2 article]1 did you discuss t1?
     b. [How2 many students]1 did you meet t1?
     c. [Howmany students’ papers]1 did you read t1?
 
The argument will be based on consideration that come from parasitic gap licensing, in particular from our attempt to make sense of facts such as those in (2) and (3).
 
(2) a. [Whose2 article]1 did you read t1 after making a copy of pg1?
      b. *[Whose2 article]1 did you read t1after talking to pg2 on the phone?
 
(3) a. *[Whose2 article]1 did you ask me to read t1 after introducing myself to pg2?
     b. [Whose2 article]1 did you ask me to read t1 after introducing yourself to pg2?
 
The contrast in (2) is expected by all theories of pied-piping: whether or not the wh-phrase moves covertly, it is not expected to license a parasitic gap (for a variety of reasons, among them the fact that parasitic gaps are normally not licensed by covert movement). We argue that the contrast in (3) is more telling, suggesting that the wh-phrase undergoes covert movement and that such movement can license parasitic gaps under conditions that we attempt to specify.