Successful features: Verb raising and adverbs in L2 acquisition under an Organic Grammar approach

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Under Organic Grammar (Vainikka and Young-Scholten 2005; 2007), the building of L2 syntactic structure is constrained by UG in interaction with primary linguistic data. On the basis of verb raising, we argue against the partial UG availability pursued in Hawkins and Chan (1997) in their Failed Functional Features Hypothesis, whose refinement by Hawkins and Hattori (2006) states that only those uninterpretable syntactic features present in the learner’s L1 remain accessible for L2 acquisition. After summarizing UG-driven L2 German verb raising, we consider French/English adverb placement data pointing to L1-driven verb raising (White, 1991a, b; Schwartz, 1996). However, absence of Frenchlike raising in questions and negation (White 1992; Eubank 1994) requires an alternative account. Based on Vainikka’s (2007) framework which dispenses with Cinque’s (1999) prolific projections, we provide an alternative analysis.


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