Phasing in Full Interpretation
Hiroki Narita
May 2011

Contrary to the conventionally assumed system of labeled phrase structure, this thesis will argue for the hypothesis that the theory of bare phrase structure (Chomsky 1994, 1995 et seq.) should assume no mechanism of labeling/projection. It will be argued that the Inclusiveness Condition and the No-tampering Condition necessitate, among other things, structure-generation without labeling/projection and cyclic derivation by phase. It will be further claimed that this restrictive model of syntax always generates, phase by phase, syntactic objects (SOs) of the form {H, α}, where H is a lexical item (LI) and α an SO. This restriction, referred to as the H-α schema, will be shown to derive a number of empirically grounded locality constraints in tandem with the Phase-Impenetrability Condition (Chomsky 2000, 2004, 2008), a desirable result both in terms of breadth of empirical coverage and theory-internal simplicity. Another important consequence is that the notion of endocentricity/headedness can no longer be attributed to (X-bar theoretic) projection. It will be claimed that each SO {H, α} can be efficiently assigned endocentric interpretation by the Conceptual-Intentional system (CI) and the Sensorimotor system (SM) via minimal search of LIs—H is always the head of {H, α}, primarily configuring the interpretation of the SO. Full and consistent satisfaction of Full Interpretation is thereby achieved, maximally corroborating the desideratum of the Strong Minimalist Thesis.
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/001304
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: Doctoral Dissertation, Harvard University
keywords: merge, phase, full interpretation, inclusiveness, no-tampering condition, labeling, projection, endocentricity/headedness, the h-α schema, locality, island constraints, syntax
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