Clitic placement in Mam (Mayan) requires a host restriction
Tessa Scott
June 2019

In San Juan Atitan Mam (SJA Mam), polar questions are expressed by the second position clitic =m. This clitic can attach to a plethora of categories by means of Local Dislocation (Embick and Noyer 2001). However, =m never attaches to the right of another clitic. This pattern raises two important theoretical issues for Distributed Morphology (DM; Halle and Marantz (1993)). The first is whether or not the clitic status of a morpheme is encoded in the grammar. The second is the need for a theory of possible hosts for clitics. Based on the SJA Mam data, I conclude that the linearization instructions for the polar question clitic must reference the clitic status of its host, suggesting that clitics are different in crucial ways from other morphemes in the grammar.
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/004950
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: NELS 49: Proceedings of the Forty-Ninth Annual Meeting of the North East Linguistic Society, vol. 3, eds. Maggie Baird & Jonathan Pesetsky, 117-126
keywords: second position clitic, mayan, mam, linearization, clitic placement, local dislocation, morphology, syntax
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