This paper presents two case studies of elements which appear to c-select for more than one category as their complement: negation in German and diminutive marking in Halkomelem Salish. It is argued that both cases can successfully be analyzed in a way not contradicting the claim that c-selection is unique (i.e., that linguistic items can at most c-select for one category). German negation is analyzed as a (category-neutral) root which does not have any categorial (including c-selectional) properties and as such is able to combine with any category. Halkomelem diminutive marking is analyzed as c-selecting for (category-neutral) roots and as such appears to combine with nouns, verbs and adjectives (before they are so categorized). This result leads to the conclusion that roots cannot c-select but that they can be c-selected for and thus advances our understanding of the syntactic properties of roots.
Proceedings of the 25th West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics
edited by Donald Baumer, David Montero, and Michael Scanlon
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