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Cartography of postverbal subjects in Spanish and Catalan

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Abstract

Subjects in post-verbal position in Romance have been assumed to be in <i>an in situ </i>Spec VP position in many recent analyses in their V S O order (Motapayane1995, Ordóñez 1998, Costa 2000, Alexiadou &#38; Anagnostopoulou 2001, Cardinaletti 2001). In this paper, we will give arguments for an alternative view in which post-verbal subjects in this order are moved to at least to an Spec positions above VP, which I will call SubjP, and below the final landing site of verbs in TP. Arguments in favor of this characterization come from the comparison of Catalan and Spanish, which differ minimally in patterns of subject inversion with respect to quantifiers, adverbs and restructuring contexts. This work presents new evidence that a richer inflectional structure in the postverbal field leads to a more parsimonious account for parametric difference in patterns of subject distribution in closely related languages.

References

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