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Evidence from L1 acquisition for the syntax of <i>wh</i>-scope marking in French *

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Abstract

We argue for alternative <i>wh</i>-scope marking strategies in the acquisition of LD-questions. <i>Direct Dependency </i>involves a matrix non-referential <i>wh</i>-scope marker licensing a medial referential <i>wh</i>-phrase. L1 Partial <i>wh</i>-movement is well-documented cross-linguistically.We take the claim that children go through a stage involving <i>wh</i>-scope marking strategies, ungrammatical in the target language but reflecting parametric settings of other languages, a step further by arguing for the existence of L1 <i>Indirect wh-Dependencies</i>: thematrix scope marker is a referential <i>wh</i>-phrase quantifying over propositions, restricted by a subordinate <i>wh</i>-question over individuals. In L1 French, the matrix and subordinate <i>wh</i>-phrases appear <i>in-situ </i>or locally <i>fronted</i>, transparently reflecting the covert/overt syntax of Hindi <i>wh</i>-questions (Dayal 2000).We conclude that the syntax of L1 scope marking should be correlated with the acquisition of complementation.

References

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