Elena Titov
September 2018

This paper offers an in-depth analysis of the Russian OVS construction in an attempt to account for the parametric variation in the availability of OVS cross-linguistically. It is argued that the Russian OVS construction is base-generated and is employed in order to encode the relative information-structural prominence of arguments. It is proposed that, cross-linguistically, syntactic encoding of information- structural prominence relations via neutral scrambling is available exclusively to languages that are capable of encoding thematic prominence relations of arguments at PF. Conversely, languages that lack PF encoding of thematic prominence are obliged to syntactically represent this prominence relation, which results in the unavailability of syntactic encoding of information-structural prominence. A consequence of this is that when information-structural and thematic prominence relations misalign, only one of them can be syntactically represented. An interpretive relation that fails to be syntactically encoded must be made visible at PF.
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Reference: lingbuzz/004194
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keywords: syntax, prosody, morphology, information structure, scrambling
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