On the Lack of Transparency Effects in French

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Cinque (2002) examines those transparency effects that have been claimed to point to the existence of restructuring in French and concludes that quantifier and adverb climbing depend not on restructuring but, rather, on an <i>irrealis </i>context. In this paper, we show that restructuring does not play an active role in explaining the existence of <i>en </i>‘of-it’ and <i>y </i>‘there’ climbing or long movement in ‘easy-to-please’ constructions either, which leads to the conclusion that Modern French has no transparency effects of the restructuring kind. We then present arguments against Cinque’s (2004) thesis that verbs of the restructuring class are universally functional verbs. Instead, we adopt the Cinque (2001)/Cardinaletti &#38; Shlonsky (2004) approach according to which restructuring verbs can be merged either as lexical or functional verbs. We argue that this approach should be parameterized to yield three options that account for the cross-dialectal/linguistic variation associated with restructuring.


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