External Merge to Specifier of CP: Complementizers Projecting an Argument
Irina Burukina
October 2021

The standard assumption that Spec,CP is always an A-bar position has been questioned for several languages where embedded C heads are involved in agreement and case-assignment; however, the idea that no XP can be introduced in Spec,CP by external merge has remained unchallenged. The paper presents novel object control data from Mari (Uralic; nominative, SOV) and argues that, in this language, a particular type of C head is capable of thematically licensing an overt argument externally merged in Spec,CP: the complementizer manən used in infinitival complement clauses projects a dative Goal of communication. This behavior of manən follows from its dual nature: it is a semi-grammaticalized verb ‘say’ that retains some lexical characteristics. I further suggest that the dative Goal can be considered an overt realization of the ADDRESSEE discourse variable, in line with the recent work on the presence of SPEAKER, ADDRESSEE, and logophoric center in syntax.
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/005675
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: Ms.
keywords: logophoric control, complementizer, cp, discourse arguments, a/a-bar distinction, grammaticalization, syntax
previous versions: v2 [July 2021]
v1 [December 2020]
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