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Movement and Silence$
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Richard S. Kayne

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780195179163

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195179163.001.0001

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Prepositions as Probes

Prepositions as Probes

(p.85) 5 Prepositions as Probes
Movement and Silence

Richard S. Kayne (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter explores the relation between prepositions and movement, arguing that in at least some cases — in particular, in causatives — what is considered as the argument of a preposition comes together with it as the result of movement (or internal Merge), not as the result of external Merge. The prepositions in question are introduced above verb phrase (VP), and are paired with a K(ase) head that is also introduced above VP, in a way that may be parallel to recent work by Dominique Sportiche on determiners. The main thesis here is that some prepositions (and, by extension, some postpositions) are probes, in the sense of Chomsky's recent work. The particular case considered here is that of dative prepositions preceding subjects in French (and Italian) causatives.

Keywords:   prepositions, probes, movements, causatives, verb phrases, dative prepositions, internal Merge, French language, Italian language, word order

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