This study is an investigation into the acceptability of long-distance reflexives (LDRs, sometimes called non-clause-bounded reflexives) to speakers of Norwegian. This study uses a different methodology to all other studies of this phenomenon, in that it uses a quantitative approach to determine grammaticality and acceptability rather than an introspective, purely qualitative analysis. In this respect, the results of this study will be of interest to Norwegian linguists and other researchers of syntax, since the judgements recorded are those (on the whole) of 'average', non-linguistically trained speakers. Their intuitions regarding the use of long-distance reflexives provide valuable data, in particular in confirming tendencies assumed in the syntax-oriented LDR literature, while also showing that these tendencies are not absolute. It suggests that a purely syntactic approach to LDR is too restrictive, at least for the
Norwegian data presented here.
The quantitative methodology shows the acceptability of LDR in
Norwegian is far from syntactically homogeneous, showing that current approaches to LDR are inadequate. The results of this study show that there are regional differences in the acceptability of LDR in
Norway. Other factors such as age, level of education, sex, the 'nativeness' of the speaker, the 'nativeness' of both the speaker's parents and whether the speaker was from a city or the country also affect a speaker's use and acceptance of LDR.
Tania E. Strahan completed her PhD in 2001 at The University of
Melbourne, Australia. The material in this book is based upon her doctoral research.