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Kobele, Gregory M.: Eliding the Derivation: A Minimalist Formalization of Ellipsis

In this paper I use the formal framework of minimalist grammars to implement a version of the traditional approach to ellipsis as ‘deletion under syntactic (derivational) identity’, which, in conjunction with canonical analyses of voice phenomena, immediately allows for voice mismatches in verb phrase ellipsis, but not in sluicing. This approach to ellipsis is naturally implemented in a parser by means of threading a state encoding a set of possible antecedent derivation contexts through the derivation tree. Similarities between ellipsis and pronominal resolution are easily stated in these terms. In the context of this implementation, two approaches to ellipsis in the transformational community are naturally seen as equivalent descriptions at different levels: the LF-copying approach to ellipsis resolution is best seen as a description of the parser, whereas the phonological deletion approach a description of the underlying relation between form and meaning.

Maintained by Stefan Müller

Created: October 15, 2012
Last modified: May 19, 2014

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