chapter  6
30 Pages

Grafts and Beyond: Graph-Theoretic Syntax


The generative theory of phrase structure has undergone several major revisions over the years in an attempt to rid itself of posited primitives, which while seemingly empirically motivated, were nevertheless stipulations. For example, binary branching, which was stipulated in X -bar theory, is derived in Minimalism through the operation Merge. We argue that certain mechanisms in current generative syntax that are useful at narrow syntax must also be interpreted at the interfaces, and we argue that this idea runs into diffi culties. One example of this is multidominance as it is realized in current theories. Multidominance, the sharing of constituents by two separate maximal Phrase-markers, has been argued to provide an adequate representation of the chains associated with particular cases of displacement (e.g., right node raising, ATB wh -movement, headless relative clause formation, cf. McCawley 1982; van Riemsdijk 2001, 2006; Citko 2005; GracaninYuksek 2007; Wilder 2008; de Vries 2009, a.o.). Multidominance is used at narrow syntax to represent movement, but at the interfaces multidominance structures are problematic for linearization algorithms because these types of structures create ordering paradoxes with items that are multiply dominated (see Wilder 2008, de Vries 2009).