Seminar in Syntactic Theory: Ellipsis and Islands (and many other instances of repair)
Spring 2011

Topic I  Islands
Readings for Jan.25-Feb.8:
Ross 'Guess who?'; Chomsky 'Some Empirical Issues' pp. 71-73; Merchant The Syntax of Silence Chapter 4, Section 1 and Chapter 5 [The link is to the 1999 thesis. As far as I can tell the 2001 book is identical in content.]; Lasnik review of Merchant's book; Lasnik 'When can you save a structure by destroying it?'; Fox and Lasnik 'Successive cyclic movement and island repair'. Here's a handout on island repair.
Additional suggested readings for Feb. 1-8: Chung, Ladusaw and McCloskey 'Sluicing and Logical Form'; Kennedy and merchant 'Attributive comparative deletion' (lots about repair of Left Branch Constraint violations); Frazier and Clifton 'The syntax-discourse divide: Processing ellipsis' (lots of acceptability experiments on sluicing, including island violating sluicing).
Additional suggested readings for Feb. 8: Chung, Ladusaw and McCloskey 2010 'Sluicing(:) Between Structure and Inference'; Chung 'Sluicing and the Lexicon: The Point of No Return'
Supplemental readings on intermediate stranding: du Plessis on P-stranding in Afrikaans; McCloskey on Q-stranding in Irish English.
Supplemental readings on the P-stranding prohibition: Almeida and Yoshida on Brazilian Portuguese; Abels dissertation.
Supplemental readings on architectural issues: Lakoff reply to Baker and Brame; Lasnik on Derivation vs. representation; Perlmutter diss. (esp. chapter 5 and Epilogue), discussion of repair of Comp-t violation added in published version.
Readings for Feb. 22: On Subject Condition (or EPP) repair, Lasnik and Park 'The EPP and the Subject Condition under Sluicing'; Handout.
On Sprouting and islands, Chung, Ladusaw and McCloskey 'Sluicing and Logical Form' pp.277-279; Merchant diss. 4.4; Chung, Ladusaw and McCloskey 2010 'Sluicing(:) Between Structure and Inference'; Chung 'Sluicing and the Lexicon: The Point of No Return'.
Topic II Strong Features
Readings for March 1-8: On Subject Condition (or EPP) repair, HO from last week; HO on Feature Strength; Miyagawa on EPP and Scrambling
Supplemental readings on strong features: Richards 1999 on featural cyclicity; Boskovic and Lasnik 1999 on featural cyclicity; Ochi 1999 on feature movement; Craenenbroeck and Dikken 2006 on EPP repair
Topic III Linearization; PF Realizability
Readings for March 15: Fox and Pesetsky on linearization; Richards 1997 diss. Ch. 4, sect. 2 "Destroying the evidence: ellipsis"
Readings for March 29-April 12 : Fox and Pesetsky HO from last time; Richards Ch. 4 pp. 118-124; Ch. 4, section 1 "Movement to two strong features"; Lasnik on Multiple Sluicing.
Topic IV Repair by Resumption?
Readings for April 12:
Wang on 'Sluicing and resumption'; Kennedy 'VP-Deletion and 'Nonparasitic Gaps'; Merchant thesis pp. 172-196.
Don't forget to send us your paper proposal before Monday 4/18
Topic III Revisited
Readings for April 19:
Lasnik on Multiple Sluicing.
Topic IV Repair of Condition B Violations? (April 19 if there's time)
April 26 Student presentations: Darryl, Kenshi
   [Here's Yngve's "Depth Hypothesis" paper, which argues that because of memory limitations grammars function so as to limit depth of embedding on left branches.]
May 3 Student presentations: Sayaka, Dan
May 10 Student presentations: Brad, Chris
Papers due Friday, May 13

Meeting time:

Tuesday 3:30-6:00
1108B MMH

Norbert Hornstein and Howard Lasnik, instructors


Course description

This course will examine a variety of situations where some syntactic constraint is violated, but the violation is seemingly remediated by ellipsis (island violation repair being the original case). We will read some of the classic, and recent, literature on these topics and explore some new directions. Students will do a class presentation and write a term paper.