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Detail of contribution

Auteur: Jacopo GARZONIO

Co-Auteur(s): Cecilia POLETTO, University of Frankfurt, Germany

Non and its companions: on the big NegP hypothesis

Abstract/Résumé: In this work we apply a cartographic approach to negation and propose that what is commonly defined as NegP is a cover term (much like IP or CP) for a complex set of projections that have each their own specific value and none of which has the semantic value of NegP . Hence, Zanuttini’s (1997) proposal in (1) has to be restated as (2), where all negative markers are actually generated inside a big XP: (1) [NegP1 non [TP1 [NegP2 mica [ TP2 [AdvP already] [NegP3 niente [ Asp perf. Vpast part [Asp gen/progr [AdvP always] [NegP4 NO]]]]]]]] (2) [ Focus/Operator NO [ScalarP non [MinQ mica [ExistentialP (ni)-ente ]]]] We claim that this complex XP is not the semantic booleian operator, but is only indirectly connected to it. As the syntactic realization of Tense differs from its semantics (see on this Giorgi and Pianesi (1997)), we think that all the elements that seem to encode negation in Romance are not the expression of this negative operator. This complex XP is generated at the border of the vP and then each of its internal elements can move to a different position in the clausal spine of FPs for feature checking. Arguments in favor of the approach: 1. It accounts for cases of “discontinuous negation” in a way similar to Belletti’s (2005) proposal of DP-doubling as stemming from a unique (big) DP. 2. The two negative elements can actually occur as a single constituent: for instance in dialects like Paduan, where constituent negation is marked by two adjacent elements. 3. The elements which are reanalyzed to become the negative marker have a different though recurring etymology: as shown by Zanuttini (1997), Northern Italian negative markers all derive from a restricted set of elements: a) minimizers b) n-words corresponding to ‘nothing’ c) the polarity particle. 4. The hypothesis captures cases of movement of lower elements to higher positions: minimizers are generally located higher than T2 but lower than T1, while negators deriving from n-words are generally lower. References Belletti, A. (2005) Extended Doubling and the VP Periphery. Probus 17, 1-35. Giorgi A. and F. Pianesi (1997) Tense and Aspect: from Semantics to Morphosyntax. Oxford University Press, Oxford & New York. Zanuttini, R. (1997) Negation and Clausal Structure: A Comparative Study of Romance Languages. Oxford University Press, Oxford & New York.