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LINGUIST List 21.2821

Wed Jul 07 2010

Disc: On Comparative Inversions

Editor for this issue: Elyssa Winzeler <elyssalinguistlist.org>

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        1.    Dong-woo Park, On Comparative Inversions

Message 1: On Comparative Inversions
Date: 06-Jul-2010
From: Dong-woo Park <pdw83snu.ac.kr>
Subject: On Comparative Inversions
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Culicover and Winkler (2008) in Journal of Linguistics says that more than
one auxiliary can precede a subject in comparative inversion structures as

A. ANNA ran much faster than could have MANNY.
B. ANNA ran much faster than MANNY could have.

It is also suggested that in order for the sentence A to be grammatical,
there are two premises. The first one is MANNY should be a contrastive
focus. And the second one is MANNY must receive a strong falling pitch accent.

However, a lot of native speakers whose mother tongue is English say that
sentence A is ungrammatical. I know that this sentence is rather marginal.
So I am not sure whether I can examine this kind of comparative inversion
in my paper as a main topic. I would appreciate any input others may have
on this matter.

Linguistic Field(s): Syntax

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