Volume 9

The editor of the ninth volume is Alina TIGᾸU


The Low Definite Article and the Evolution of the Romanian DP

Alexandra Cornilescu (alexandracornilescu@yahoo.com)

This paper is devoted to the study of the low definite article and the evolution of the DP in Romanian. It is argued that the definite article in Old Romanian (OR) may occupy the first position inside the DP as well as a lower position and that OR displays both Local and Long Distance Agree when it comes to valuating definiteness. It is further argued that the subsequent disappearance of the low article triggered the specialization of the demonstrative pronoun (a)cel as the second definite article of Romanian. Unlike OR, where Long Distance Agree co-exists with Local Agree, Modern Romanian only relies on the latter mechanism, with a direct consequence on the disappearance of those constructs presupposing the valuation of definiteness across another constituent. This change is argued to have been triggered by the fact that definiteness becomes a concord feature with adjectives at some point in the evolution of Romanian, which could enter the derivation carrying an unvalued uninterpretable definite feature which would be valued by way of Agree with the noun. The availability of such a mechanism which allowed the valuing of definiteness on pre-nominal adjectives triggered the requirement (holding for ModR) that the constituent valuing the definiteness feature of D be the first AP?NP below that D.

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Remarks on the Lower Functional Architecture of the Romanian DP (Pseudo) Partitivity and Bare Nouns

Mihaela Tănase-Dogaru (mihaela.dogaru@gmail.com)

This paper investigates the lower part of the Determiner Phrase in Romanian, analyzing the relation holding between the Classifier and the Number projections. Several important conclusions are reached: It is firstly shown that Number projects syntactically within the Romanian DP and that NumP is sufficient for argumenthood, being a strong projection. A second, novel result which disconfirms the main line of analysis adopted within the literature on Romanian so far concerns number morphology and classifier morphology, which are shown to co-occur. Thirdly, it is shown that the first nominal inside pseudopartitive constructions serves the same purpose as classifiers in classifier languages. Finally, bare singulars are argued to project Number.

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How are Positive Polarity Items Licensed in Romanian

Mihaela Zamfirescu (mihaela.zamfirescu@gmail.com))

This paper investigates lexical positive polarity items (PPI) in Romanian with a view to integrate the two main directions of analysis in the literature: PPIs licensing and the inherent meaning of PPIs. In what concerns the former aspect, the study of potential triggers and possible configurations leads the author to conclude that PPIs are doubly marked negative polarity items. With respect to the latter undertaking, the author reaches the conclusion that PPIs should be ranged with scalar predicates that trigger to inference phenomena.

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Subjunctive Complements in Romanian: the View from Control

Maura Cotfas (maura_cotfas@yahoo.com)

This paper deals with Romanian subjunctive dependents selected by control predicates. The author challenges the view that Romanian is a control language arguing instead for its inclusion into the class of raising languages (cf. the parameter proposed in Alboiu 2007). Romanian should thus be ranged with the Balkan languages in view of the fact that it displays very few cases of control, which are accounted for as instances of standard raising. The paper also proposes a more refined, tripartite classification of subjunctive dependents in control environments, identifying a novel type of subjunctive complement labeled as ‘the Independent Subjunctive’, whose properties, such as lack of selection, draw it closer to indicatives.

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The Comprehension of Subject and Direct Object Wh-questions in Child Romanian

Anamaria Benţea (anamaria.bentea@unige.ch)

This paper is a language acquisition study devoted to the comprehension of who- and which-questions by typically developing monolingual Romanian-speaking children. Its aim is threefold: to verify whether the subject/object asymmetry identified crosslinguistically is also apparent in Romanian, to investigate whether case-marking mechanisms influence the comprehension of wh-questions, and to determine the NP relevance in what concerns children’s computation of locality effects. The results reveal two asymmetries with children: a subject-object asymmetry in the comprehension of which questions and a performance asymmetry with respect to object who- and which-dependencies. No difference with respect to the comprehension of subject and object who-questions is detected. In line with Friedman et al. (2009), the author views these asymmetries as intervention effects caused by the relation of inclusion holding between the featural sets which characterize the intervening subject and the moved wh-object.

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On the Syntax od Romanian Clitic Doubling Constructions

Alina Tigău (alina_mihaela_tigau@yahoo.com)

This paper explores the hypothesis that Clitic Doubling (CD) sequences are not just mere cases of ‘doubling’ i.e., a mere enrichment process of a simple cliticisation construction by an additional DP which seems to compete for the same argument position as the clitic (as CD has been traditionally viewed). On the contrary, its aim is show that they are totally different instances wherein the dependence of the full DP on the clitic signals the existence of a special relation set up by the clitic and which takes the full DP as a member. More specifically, CD structures are argued to be semantically and syntactically related to integrals (Hornstein et al. (1995)), Uriagereka (2001, 2002, 2005). The pronominal clitic licenses the integral relation to which the associate DP is a participant and is analysed as a determiner taking as its restriction a complex argument enclosing the integral predication in guise of a Small Clause. The associate DP is argued to have argumental status. Further tests show that both the clitic and its associate move out of their merge position: the former is attracted to the Person field so as to valuate its interpretable person feature, whereas the second moves to SpecvP so as to remain accessible for case valuation.

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