Clefts and their Relatives

Matthew Reeve | University College London
ISBN 9789027255686 | EUR 99.00 | USD 149.00
ISBN 9789027274601 | EUR 99.00 | USD 149.00
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Cleft constructions have long presented an analytical challenge for syntactic theory. This monograph argues that clefts and related constructions cannot be analysed in a straightforwardly compositional manner. Instead, it proposes that the locality conditions on modification (for example by a restrictive relative clause) must be reformulated such that they account for the apparent compositionality of DP-internal modification whilst also permitting ‘discontinuous’ modification of the type which is independently needed for constructions such as relative clause extraposition. The empirical focus of the book is on clefts in English and Russian, which have a similar interpretation but considerably divergent syntactic structures. The author argues that, despite these syntactic differences, both types of cleft are mapped to their semantic interpretations in the same manner. This monograph will be essential reading for those working on cleft constructions and copular sentences more generally, and will be of interest to those working on the syntax-semantics interface.
[Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today, 185] 2012.  xiii, 223 pp.
Publishing status: Available
Table of Contents
“In contrast with much of the literature, Reeve argues that clefts are evidence for a syntax/semantics mismatch. This approach sheds new light onto a classic puzzle of the syntax/semantics literature, bringing clefts in line with discontinuous modification patterns.”
“The book is a must-read for those working on the structure of complex NP constructions, as it sheds light on various linguistic patterns and attempts to provide explanations for many of them. It establishes itself as one of the most complete and in-depth analyses of the topic to date, and is likely to become necessary reading for any future researchers wishing to venture into the curiosities of cleft constructions. The author does not claim to have all the answers but he makes it clear that his work is a step forward in achieving a comprehensive understanding of this complicated grammatical construction. It is not an introductory book, as it requires a solid knowledge of several linguistic issues (as well as knowledge of generative grammar) because the material itself is complicated and the author does not give detailed definitions of the linguistic concepts discussed. However, any researcher interested in general linguistics striving to better understand cleft constructions and their relationship with other related constructions must have a copy of this volume.”
Cited by

Cited by 21 other publications

Aravind, Athulya, Martin Hackl & Ken Wexler
2018. Syntactic and Pragmatic Factors in Children’s Comprehension of Cleft Constructions. Language Acquisition 25:3  pp. 284 ff. DOI logo
Authier, J. Marc & Liliane Haegeman
2014. No Such Thing as “Parameterized Structural Deficiency” in the Left Periphery1. In Language Use and Linguistic Structure,  pp. 33 ff. DOI logo
Cruschina, Silvio
2015. Some notes on clefting and fronting*. In Structures, Strategies and Beyond [Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today, 223],  pp. 181 ff. DOI logo
den Dikken, Marcel
2017. Pseudoclefts and Other Specificational Copular Sentences. In The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Syntax, Second Edition,  pp. 1 ff. DOI logo
Gardelle, Laure
2022. Les pronoms dans une perspective cognitive. Corela :HS-35 DOI logo
Gheorghe, Mihaela
2017. Construcții (pseudo)scindate în româna veche. Diacronia :6 DOI logo
Gheorghe, Mihaela
2017. (Pseudo)cleft constructions in old Romanian. Diacronia :6 DOI logo
2014. The architecture ofit-clefts. Journal of Linguistics 50:2  pp. 269 ff. DOI logo
Hartmann, Jutta M.
2013. Freezing in it-clefts. Canadian Journal of Linguistics/Revue canadienne de linguistique 58:3  pp. 487 ff. DOI logo
Jin, Dawei
2020. Copula functions in a cross-Sinitic perspective. Folia Linguistica 54:1  pp. 89 ff. DOI logo
2017. Frenchil y aclefts, existential sentences and the Focus-Marking Hypothesis. Journal of French Language Studies 27:3  pp. 405 ff. DOI logo
Kumamoto, Chiaki
2012. REFERENTIALITY OF THE PRONOUNS IT AND THAT IN COPULAR SENTENCES. Discourse and Interaction 5:2  pp. 35 ff. DOI logo
Lahousse, Karen
2015. A case of focal adverb preposing in French*. In Structures, Strategies and Beyond [Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today, 223],  pp. 209 ff. DOI logo
Osborne, Timothy & Matthew Reeve
2018. Scope domains Toward a Dependency Grammar account of the syntactic distribution of negative polarity items. Acta Linguistica Academica 65:1  pp. 119 ff. DOI logo
Philippova, Tatiana
2022. Ambivalent Adpositions and “P-Stranding” in Russian. Linguistic Inquiry 53:2  pp. 399 ff. DOI logo
Reeve, Matthew
2019. An agreement-based analysis of extraction from nominals. Natural Language & Linguistic Theory 37:1  pp. 263 ff. DOI logo
Reeve, Matthew & Glyn Hicks
2017. Adjunct Extraposition: Base Generation or Movement?. Syntax 20:3  pp. 215 ff. DOI logo
Romoli, Jacopo
2013. A scalar implicature-based approach to neg-raising. Linguistics and Philosophy 36:4  pp. 291 ff. DOI logo
Samo, Giuseppe & Paola Merlo
2021. Intervention effects in clefts: a study in quantitative computational syntax. Glossa: a journal of general linguistics 6:1 DOI logo
Zimmermann, Malte, Joseph P. De Veaugh-Geiss, Swantje Tönnis & Edgar Onea
2020. (Non-)exhaustivity in focus partitioning across languages. In Approaches to Hungarian [Approaches to Hungarian, 16],  pp. 207 ff. DOI logo

This list is based on CrossRef data as of 14 february 2024. Please note that it may not be complete. Sources presented here have been supplied by the respective publishers. Any errors therein should be reported to them.


Main BIC Subject

CFK: Grammar, syntax

Main BISAC Subject

LAN009000: LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / General
ONIX Metadata
ONIX 2.1
ONIX 3.0
U.S. Library of Congress Control Number:  2012003363 | Marc record