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Bookmark and Share Paper 2807

Successive Cyclic Movement as Recursive Symmetry-Breaking
Andreas Blümel
87-97 (complete paper or proceedings contents)


This paper defends a recent idea concerning the way certain instances of syntactic movement are triggered. In particular, the idea is discussed that successive cyclic WH-movement comes about by iterated symmetrical structures of the form {XP, YP}, which cannot receive a label (cf. Chomsky in press, Ott 2011) and thus force unbounded movement. It is shown that the approach is preferable to preceding analyses (Boeckx 2003, Boškovíc 2007) on conceptual grounds, in that fewer technicalia are needed and in that problems of the mentioned analyses, which the author of this paper addresses, are avoided. Implied in the proposal is that Merge is not constrained to generate asymmetrical structures only (pace Kayne 2011). Two devices for how movement comes to a halt are discussed.

Published in

Proceedings of the 30th West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics
edited by Nathan Arnett and Ryan Bennett
Table of contents
Printed edition: $375.00