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LINGUIST List 21.3373

Sun Aug 22 2010

Diss: Syntax: Ghaniabadi: 'The Empty Noun Construction in Persian'

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        1.    Saeed Ghaniabadi, The Empty Noun Construction in Persian

Message 1: The Empty Noun Construction in Persian
Date: 20-Aug-2010
From: Saeed Ghaniabadi <Saeed_GhaniabadiUmanitoba.ca>
Subject: The Empty Noun Construction in Persian
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Institution: University of Manitoba
Program: Linguistics Department
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2010

Author: Saeed Ghaniabadi

Dissertation Title: The Empty Noun Construction in Persian

Linguistic Field(s): Syntax

Subject Language(s): Farsi, Western (pes)
Language Family(ies): Indo-European

Dissertation Director:
Jila Ghomeshi
David Embick
H. C. Wolfart
Kevin Russell

Dissertation Abstract:

This dissertation explores, within the general framework of Distributed
Morphology, the licensing conditions of empty nouns in Persian, a Western
Iranian language, and the issues that arise within this context for the
distribution of plural marking and the insertion of the Ezafe vowel. With
respect to the licensing of the empty noun, the proposal made in this
thesis is along the lines of those that link ellipsis to information
structure (e.g. Rooth 1992a, 1992b; Gengel 2007, among others). It is
suggested that the Empty Noun Construction (ENC) is derived through the
interaction between the following two information-structural features: (i)
the E(llipsis)-feature, which ensures that the head noun is identical with
its counterpart in the antecedent and specifies the head noun for
non-pronunciation; (ii) the F(ocus)-feature, which specifies the remnant
modifier as an element which is in some kind of contrastive relationship
with its corresponding element in the antecedent. The interaction between
these two features is implemented in the syntax in a phase-based derivation.

Plural marking and Ezafe insertion in the ENC are accounted for within an
articulated derivational model of PF (Embick & Noyer 2001; Embick 2003 et
seq.; Pak 2008). It is proposed that the displacement of the plural marker
in the ENC is motivated by the non-pronunciation of the head noun and is
handled early in the PF derivation by Local Dislocation operation. Adopting
Pak's (2008) model of syntax-phonology interface, the rule responsible for
the insertion of the Ezafe linker -e is argued to be a phonological rule
that applies at the Late-Linearization stage to connect [+N] heads to their
following modifiers/complements.

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