Japanese gapping in minimalist syntax
This dissertation investigates an elliptical construction called Gapping in Japanese. Gapping is the omission of a predicate in clauses that are conjoined. The study focuses on capturing the correlation between Gapping and coordinate structures conjoined with the conjunction sosite 'and', which is not accounted for in previous analyses. Also, I attempt to account for the following additional properties of Japanese Gapping: (a) the omitted predicate in one clause is interpreted as identical to the overt predicate in the other clause, and (b) the gap must be in a non-final conjunct or conjuncts. The proposed analysis is made possible by the assumptions of the Minimalist Program, such as the operations Select, Copy and Merge, and principles of economy. I propose that sosite has a special function of copying lexical items in a numeration due to its intrinsic property of reduplicating items. This operation is called AND-Copy. AND-Copy targets particular lexical items in the numeration and creates phonologically null copies, following principles of economy. Thus, under the proposed analysis the source of the gap is the phonologically null copy. Since the copy guarantees identity with the original item, this accounts for why the gap in one clause is interpreted as identical to the overt element in the other clause.I propose a structure in which the conjunction sosite is the head and takes one TP as complement on its left and another TP as specifier on its right. I further propose that AND-Copy must be immediately followed by Merge by adopting the definition of the operation Move, which consists of Copy and Merge. This nicely accounts for the directionality of the gap: once the copy is created by AND-Copy, it must be immediately used for the derivation of the complement clause. As a result, the gap occurs in the non-final clause while the overt item is used in the final clause.
- Linguistics