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Neglected cases of rightward movement

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Abstract

We show that sign languages admit genuine cases of rightward movement in the domain of wh-phrases and negative quantifiers, instantiating the mirror image of spoken languages in which wh-phrases and negative quantifiers overtly move leftward. The pattern emerging from Italian Sign Language (LIS), American Sign Language (ASL) and Indo-Pakistani Sign Language (IPSL) opens intriguing questions concerning the role of language external factors influencing the final shape of languages at the articulatory-perceptual interface. According to the account offered here, language external factors, in accordance with the Processing-to-Grammar Correspondence Hypothesis, actively interact with language specific rules and configurations, determined by the parameters of Universal Grammar.

References

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