A Probe-Goal Approach to Agreement and Incorporation Restrictions in Southern Tiwa

Marc Richards, Fabian Heck

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    11 Citations (Scopus)


    Southern Tiwa (Tanoan) exhibits agreement with up to three arguments (ergative, absolutive, dative). This agreement is subject to certain restrictions resembling the Person-Case Constraint paradigm (Bonet 1991). Moreover, there is a correlation between agreement restrictions and conditions on (the obviation of) noun-incorporation in Southern Tiwa, as explicitly and elegantly captured by Rosen (1990) in terms of a heterogeneous feature hierarchy and rules of association. We attempt to recast Rosen’s central insights in terms of Anagnostopoulou’s probe-sharing model of Person-Case Constraint effects (Anagnostopoulou 2003, 2006), to show that the full range of Southern Tiwa agreement and (non-)incorporation restrictions can be given a single, unified analysis within the probe-goal-Agree framework of Chomsky (2001). In particular, we argue that Southern Tiwa’s triple-agreement system is characterized by (a) an independent class probe located on the heads T and v, and (b) a rule that allows this class probe to be deleted in the context of local-person T-agreement. The various restrictions on agreement and non-incorporation then reduce to a single source: failure of class-valuation with DP (as opposed to NP) arguments.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)681-721
    Number of pages40
    JournalNatural Language and Linguistic Theory
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2010


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