The syntax of MCP

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This paper proposes that the restricted distribution of MCP follows from locality conditions on movement. The focus is the well-known absence of argument fronting in English adverbial clauses, but the account extends naturally to other clause types and to other MCP. Underlying most syntactic accounts of the distributional restrictions on MCP is the intuition that certain clause types cannot fully exploit their left-peripheral space. This intuition is directly expressed in configurational terms in what I will be calling ‘truncation’ accounts which postulate that a segment of the articulated left periphery is unavailable. In this paper I develop an intervention-based account for MCP. In this account the effect of ‘truncation’ is no longer stated as a primitive but is syntactically derived.


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