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Clitic

(1,461 words)

Author(s): Joseph Aoun
Clitics are elements that are affixed to another element, usually a head. This very general characterization encodes the fact that a multitude of elements can be affixes, hence clitics (see Kayne 1975). In this entry, the focus is on pronominal clitics in (Lebanese) Arabic that are non-nominative. Nominative affixes (or infixes) are usually viewed as agreement markers and analyzed as inflectional elements that are part of the verbal form. Nominative agreement markers are traditionally the purvie…
Date: 2018-09-15

Binding

(1,263 words)

Author(s): Joseph Aoun
Nominal expressions may be classified into three categories: anaphors such as reflexives (1a) and reciprocals (1b), pronominals (2), and referential expressions or (R-expressions) (3). The literature on Binding Theory is extensive; see Chomsky (1981), Chomsky (1995), and Hornstein (2001) for more exhaustive discussions and references. All the examples are given in Lebanese Arabic: (1) Anaphors a. šēf ḥāl-o saw.3ms state-him ‘He saw himself’ b. ḥiko ma baʿḍ-un spoke.3p with reciprocal.p ‘They spoke with each other’ (2) Pronominals sāmi šēf-o Sami saw 3ms-him ‘Sami saw him’ (3) R-e…
Date: 2018-09-15

Resumption

(2,209 words)

Author(s): Joseph Aoun
Nominal elements in natural languages may appear in positions different from the ones in which they are interpreted. This is referred to as the displacement property of natural languages (Chomsky 1995). The examples in this entry are given in Lebanese Arabic. (1a) mīn fakkarto ʾənn-o sāmi who thought.2ms that Sami ʿazam invited.3ms ‘Who did you think that Sami (has) invited?’ In sentence (1a), the interrogative WH-element ( mīn ‘who’) is interpreted as the object of the embedded verb, even though it appears in the matrix clause. The displacement property, illus…
Date: 2018-04-01