LINGUIST List 13.1012

Fri Apr 12 2002

Diss: Syntax: de Vries "Syntax of Relativization"

Editor for this issue: Karolina Owczarzak <>


  1., Syntax: de Vries "The Syntax of Relativization"

Message 1: Syntax: de Vries "The Syntax of Relativization"

Date: Wed, 10 Apr 2002 08:20:09 +0000
From: <>
Subject: Syntax: de Vries "The Syntax of Relativization"

New Dissertation Abstract

Institution: University of Amsterdam
Program: Amsterdam Center for Language and Communication
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2002

Author: Mark de Vries 

Dissertation Title: 
The Syntax of Relativization

Dissertation URL:

Linguistic Field: Typology, Syntax

Dissertation Director 1: Wim Klooster
Dissertation Director 2: Hans den Besten

Dissertation Abstract: 

The complexity of the relative construction is highly interesting from
a syntactic, typological and semantic point of view. This study mainly
addresses the syntax of relative clauses, but considerable attention
is paid to the typology of relativization, and its consequences for
grammatical theory.

In the first part of this book a variety of (generative) analyses is
systematically evaluated on the basis of well-known and less
well-known properties of the relative construction. The author argues
in favour of the so-called promotion theory of relativization, and
provides a detailed account of the syntax of the major relative clause
types around the world. Moreover, the various types of relative
elements are discussed. The second part of this book examines three
phenomena of a more general kind from the perspective of
relativization. These are apposition, extraposition and

The main conclusions are that i) specifying coordination is the
central concept underlying both apposition and extraposition; ii) an
appositive relative is in fact a false free relative that is an
apposition to the antecedent; and iii) the periphrastic relative is
the syntactic basis of all possessive constructions.

This study is of interest to anyone concerned with the relative
construction, as well as a general syntactic readership.

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