Sluicing without wh-movement in Malagasy<sup>*</sup>

Ileana Paul and Eric Potsdam

in Sluicing: Cross-Linguistic Perspectives

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780199645763
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191741135 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Studies in Theoretical Linguistics

Sluicing without wh-movement in Malagasy*

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The standard analysis of sluicing, in which wh-movement is followed by clausal deletion, predicts that sluicing should not be found in languages that do not have wh-movement. Such a conclusion has already been shown to be incorrect for a number of wh-in-situ languages, and it is also incorrect for the Austronesian language Malagasy, which exhibits a construction that has all the hallmarks of sluicing, despite the language being wh-in-situ. The chapter proposes that sluicing in Malagasy does result from clausal deletion. However, the deletion is crucially fed by an operation of predicate-fronting that externalizes the wh-phrase. Predicate-fronting has been independently proposed as a general mechanism to derive the predicate-initial (VOS) word order of certain Austronesian languages, such as Malagasy. The conclusion of the chapter is that sluicing is not a unitary syntactic construction and that different languages use different syntactic means to arrive at the same surface form.

Keywords: sluicing; Malagasy; Austronesian; predicate-fronting

Chapter.  6369 words. 

Subjects: Linguistics

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