Why do some ECM verbs resist passivisation? A phase- based explanation
Michelle Sheehan, Sonia Cyrino
May 2018

It is a well known observation that causative and perception verbs often resist passivisation. By comparing passivation patterns in English and Brazilian Portuguese, we argue for a phase-based analysis of this pattern. What these verbs have in common is a tendency to embed events, which are syntactically realised as verbal phases lacking any T-related projection. Making certain widely held assumptions about cyclic transfer, this means that the arguments of the embedded verb are not visible to matrix T by the time it probes. The attested patterns can be taken as evidence in favour of PIC2 (Chomsky 2001) and the claim that A-movement does not have access to phase-edge escape hatches.
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/004009
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: Proceedings of NELS 48
keywords: causatives, perception verbs, phases, passives, a-movement, cyclic transfer, islands, semantics, syntax
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