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VERB MOVEMENT IN FRENCH REVISITED: SYNTACTIC THEORY AND EXPERIMENTAL DATA

Abstract

This paper revisits Pollock's (1989, 1997) account of verb movement phenomena in French in the light of experimental data elicited from two groups of native speakers. The results of four different tasks indicate that the minimalist principle, according to which only strong [+finite) verbs  may raise to Infl to check and erase their features, does not apply in a systematic and consistent fashion. It appears that I.) weak [-finite] lexical verbs systematically raise past adverbs; 2.) weak [-finite] auxiliaries do raise past negation and adverbs, and optionality appears to be excluded. It is argued tha1 carefully elicited experimental data should inform syntactic theory to achieve greater descriptive accuracy.

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Ayoun, D., (1999) “VERB MOVEMENT IN FRENCH REVISITED: SYNTACTIC THEORY AND EXPERIMENTAL DATA”, Journal of Second Language Acquisition and Teaching 7, p.70-91.

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Dalila Ayoun (University of Arizona)

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0

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