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Dissertation

Not another book on Verb Raising

On February 7th, Lotte Dros-Hendriks succesfully defended her doctoral thesis and graduated. The Leiden University Centre for Linguistics congratulates Lotte on this great result.

Author
Lotte Dros-Hendriks
Date
07 February 2018
Links
Full text in Leiden University Repository

Abstract

This thesis provides a novel analysis of the word order variation in three-verb clusters reported in the Syntactic Atlas of the Dutch Dialects (SAND). On the basis of distributional correlations between order variation in verb clusters and interruption of the verb cluster by non-verbal constituents, it is argued that only 1-2-3 and its mirror image 3-2-1 are truly verbal clusters. All other orders attested in SAND are argued to involve non-verbal elements: adjectival participles and nominal infinitives. This analysis dispenses with movement in the derivation of verb clusters, an improvement over many previous accounts, as movement in this domain is unmotivated and, in certain cases, makes wrong predictions. It is argued that speakers possess knowledge of word orders that do not occur in their own language varieties. This is shown to follow from properties of human grammar. Neither familiarity nor properties of language processing can account for these results. Verb clusters are base-generated in a low structural position in the clause. There is a cut-off point for cluster interruption, which is parameterized. In West-Flemish, it lies at vP, only elements that are merged below vP can interrupt the verb cluster.

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