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Functional HeadsThe Cartography of Syntactic Structures, Volume 7$
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Laura Brugé, Anna Cardinaletti, Giuliana Giusti, Nicola Munaro, and Cecilia Poletto

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199746736

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199746736.001.0001

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On the Lexical/Functional Divide: The Case of Negation *

On the Lexical/Functional Divide: The Case of Negation *

Chapter:
(p.338) On the Lexical/Functional Divide: The Case of Negation*
Source:
Functional Heads
Author(s):

M. Rita Manzini

Leonardo M. Savoia

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199746736.003.0026

This chapter challenges the distinction between functional and lexical items, and argues that what is usually claimed to fill the head or the specifier of the functional projection NegP is not really a negative operator but only a polarity item, which can be nominal, adverbial, etc., in nature. As a consequence, these elements do not have a fixed location in the functional hierarchy, since they appear in the structure in positions related to their lexical status. The chapter is crucial to the notion of functional head in that it raises a general issue on the methodology to identify elements that qualify as such as well as to interpret word order variation displayed by functional elements.

Keywords:   functional items, lexical items, specifier, functional projection

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