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Explaining SyntaxRepresentations, Structures, and Computation$
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Peter W. Culicover

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199660230

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199660230.001.0001

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Negative curiosities Negative curiosities (1982) *

Negative curiosities Negative curiosities (1982) *

(p.163) 6 Negative curiosities (1982)*
Explaining Syntax

Peter W. Culicover

Oxford University Press

This chapter focuses on rules that are not unbounded movement rules: tag formation, negative inversion, and Stylistic Inversion. It first considers interrogative tags, and isolates those tags that display polarity phenomena from other sorts of tags. This subclass of tags does not admit of a purely transformational characterization. Rather, it appears that the syntactic characterization of this class of tags depends in part on semantic factors, in particular, on the scope of negation. The discussion on the scope of negation brings out certain facts that suggest that the scope of negation is determined by the application of stylistic transformations. The chapter concludes by discussing Stylistic Inversion, a transformation whose output bears on the interpretation of wh with the variable that it binds.

Keywords:   tag formation, negative inversion, Stylistic Inversion, interrogative tags, negation

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