Variation in English subject extraction: the case of hyperactive subjects

Abstract : Starting from the well known observation that for some speakers of English, wh-subjects extracted across a transitive predicate can bear accusative case, we investigate the syntax of the pattern in which a subject is wh-moved across a passive predicate. For a minority of speakers, in this second pattern the moved wh-subject can trigger agreement with the predicate in the matrix clause, yielding an apparent case of finite raising which we will call wh-raising. In attempt to offer a unified account of these two structures, we suggest that both are possible in a grammar that allows for DPs to be 'hyperactive' (Carstens 2011) and to take part in A-operations (i.e. syntactic phenomena related to Case and agreement) in more than one clause. The analysis that we propose is couched in the cartographic framework, and adopts the approach to subject extraction from Rizzi (2006) and Rizzi & Shlonsky (2006, 2007).
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Liliane Haegeman, Lieven Danckaert. Variation in English subject extraction: the case of hyperactive subjects. Fuzhen SI. Studies on Syntactic Cartography, China Social Sciences Press, pp.303-305, 2017, 9787520312059. ⟨halshs-01706929⟩

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