Authorvan Urk, Coppe
AffiliationMassachusetts Institute of Technology
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherUniversity of Arizona Linguistics Circle
JournalCoyote Papers: Working Papers in Linguistics, Linguistic Theory at the University of Arizona
AbstractThis paper presents an empirical argument for the claim that implicit subjects of passives are syntactically projected. It is shown that obligatory control by implicit subjects in the passive is subject to a syntactic restriction. Specifically, across languages, promotion of a DP to spec-TP blocks control by the implicit subject of a passive. This is what lies behind the old observation that subject control is incompatible with passivization in English, or Visser's Generalization (VG) (e.g. Jenkins 1972; Bresnan 1982). This generalization is a natural consequence of the logic of an agreement-based theory of control (Borer 1989; Landau 2000 et seq.), if it is assumed that control by implicit subjects is established syntactically.