The Morphosyntax of Arabic Exceptives: A minimalist approach
Hussein Al-Bataineh
February 2020

Arabic exceptive constructions involve an intricate interaction among word order, negation, and case assignment resulting from syntactic restrictions imposed on the argumental, appositional, and adjunctive functions of exceptive phrases. The morphosyntactic complexities in Arabic exceptives cast doubt on the adequacy of previous analyses that exceptive particles are prepositions, focal adverbs, or coordinating conjunctions, and they also lead the paper to argue for more principled accounts in which exceptive particles are analyzed as functional heads that project into an ExP ‘exceptive phrase’ which exists in two distinct configurations. The first includes an exceptive marker carrying [Acc-Case] ‘accusative case’ and [DS] ‘domain subtraction’ features when the ExP is an adjunct introduced by late Merge. The second includes a negative determiner which selects and c-commands the exceptive particle and deactivates/ suspends its [Acc-Case], consequently, the case feature of the ExP-complement is valued by percolation from D which combines with the exceptive marker to form a discontinuous focus particle with a [DR] ‘domain restriction’ feature.
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Reference: lingbuzz/005033
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keywords: adjunction, case valuation, conjunction, ellipsis, exception, feature percolation, negation, morphology, syntax
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