LINGUIST List 15.883

Mon Mar 15 2004

Diss: Psycholing/Semantics: Asudeh: 'Resumption...'

Editor for this issue: Takako Matsui <>


  1. asudeh, Resumption as Resource Management

Message 1: Resumption as Resource Management

Date: Sun, 14 Mar 2004 13:29:24 -0500 (EST)
From: asudeh <>
Subject: Resumption as Resource Management

Institution: Stanford University
Program: Department of Linguistics
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2004

Author: Ash Asudeh 

Dissertation Title: Resumption as Resource Management

Dissertation URL:

Linguistic Field: Psycholinguistics, Semantics, Syntax 

Subject Language: Hebrew (code: HBR), Swedish (code: SWD)

Dissertation Director 1: Mary Dalrymple
Dissertation Director 2: Peter Sells

Dissertation Abstract: 

This dissertation presents a theory of resumption based on semantic
composition. The theory achieves a unified explanation of resumptive
pronouns and copy raising. The basis is two key claims: 1) the
pronouns in resumption are ordinary pronouns, 2) natural language is
resource-sensitive. The latter is the guiding hypothesis of the
dissertation: Resource Sensitivity. It is the claim that elements of
semantic combination cannot be reused or discarded and is derived from
the resource logical approach to the syntax-semantics interface and
semantic composition, in particular Glue Semantics. Resource logics
yield a useful perspective on linguistic combinatorics in general
(phonology, syntax, semantics), but must be constrained by linguistic
theory in order to maintain a linguistically useful notion of Resource
Sensitivity. It is argued that a number of proposals in the literature
can be reduced to Resource Sensitivity while maintaining their

The hypothesis is investigated empirically with respect to resumptive
pronouns. Resumptives challenge Resource Sensitivity, since they
constitute surplus resources for semantic composition. A resource
management theory of resumption is presented, which introduces the
licensing mechanism of manager resources. Manager resources are
associated with lexical specifications for complementizers.
Cross-linguistic variation for grammaticized resumptives is explained
as lexical variation.

The resource management theory is applied to analyses of Irish,
Swedish and Hebrew. The analysis of Irish treats both resumptive
dependencies and filler-gap dependencies, including difficult mixed
patterns. The analysis of Swedish achieves a novel unification of the
Swedish resumptive system with those of Irish and Hebrew. Apparently
problematic Swedish weak crossover, reconstruction, parasitic gap, and
across-the-board extraction data are shown to in fact support the
resource management theory. A processing model for production and
parsing is proposed that explains certain resumptive-like pronouns in
English and Swedish which are not fully grammaticized.

The resource management theory is extended to copy raising in
English. Manager resources can license copy raising pronouns, but are
in this case specified as part of the lexical entries of the raising
verbs involved. This explains why a language like English can have
resumption in copy raising, but lack it in unbounded dependencies.
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