Infinitival Complements : A Preliminary Study of 'Restructuring' and Causative Constructions in Italian


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type:Departmental Bulletin Paper

Causative and 'restructuring' verbs in Italian share certain properties that make them appear to form a syntactic unit with their complement infinitive. The goal of this paper is to argue for dual subcategorization possibilities for 'restructuring' verbs and to show that similarities and differences between 'restructuring' and causative constructions follow from the proposed analysis. On the basis of the distribution of the perfect auxiliary verbs and clitic placement, the paper argues that 'restructuring' verbs can take as their complement either a VP as in the case of the causative verb, or an IP. The analysis proposed in this paper can account for some peculiar properties of 'restructuring' constructions that have not always been given a satisfactory explanation in other approaches such as those involving incorporation. In particular, it makes correct predictions about the auxiliary switch and clitic placement in sentences where two or more 'restructuring' verbs appear in sequence.



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