Conditional clauses, Main Clause Phenomena and the syntax of polarity emphasis

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This paper addresses two properties of conditional clauses: (i) their incompatibility with Main Clause Phenomena (MCP), exemplified by English argument fronting, and (ii) the unavailability of Speaker Oriented Adverbs (Ernst 2009) (SpOAs). The paper elaborates the hypothesis (Bhatt &#38; Pancheva 2002, 2006) that conditionals are derived by operator movement: the absence of MCP then follows from locality conditions. Adopting the cartographic approach to SpOAs (Cinque 1999), we propose that the operator which derives conditionals originates in SpecMood<sub>irrealis</sub>. This implementation of the movement derivation accounts for the unavailability of SpOAs. The final part of the paper extends the range of MCP: it shows that polarity emphasis is not a homogeneous phenomenon: certain expressions of emphatic polarity are MCP and hence unavailable in conditionals, while others are not restricted to root domains.


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