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The unbearable lightness of clitics

On the 23rd of January, Anastasiia Ionova successfully defended her doctoral thesis and graduated. The Leiden University Centre for Linguistics congratulates Anastasiia on this achievement.

Anastasiia Ionova
23 January 2020
Leiden University Repository


The dissertation investigates the interaction of various kinds of phonologically weak items (clitics) with different types of elliptical operations (mainly VP-ellipsis and sluicing). The main focus of the work is on what this interaction can reveal about the timing of ellipsis and cliticization.

The first part of the dissertation investigates the interaction of VP-ellipsis and second position cliticization in Serbo-Croatian and Slovenian and reveals crucial differences between the two languages in this respect: it is argued that second position cliticization is phonological in nature in the former and syntactic in the latter. The second part focuses on preposition omission under sluicing in Russian. It is argued that the operation of preposition omission is sensitive to the prosodic organization of the prepositional phrase. 

This dissertation is of relevance to those interested in the nature of cliticization, the timing of ellipsis and prosodic restrictions on elliptical operations.

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