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Deconstructing ErgativityTwo Types of Ergative Languages and Their Features$
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Maria Polinsky

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190256586

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190256586.001.0001

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Ergative as a PP

Ergative as a PP

Take two

(p.94) Chapter 5 Ergative as a PP
Deconstructing Ergativity

Maria Polinsky

Oxford University Press

In those languages that have PP-ergatives, the adpositional status of the ergative straightforwardly motivates a number of properties that set PPs apart from DPs. Ergative expressions in PP-ergative languages do not participate in raising and control because they are not DPs. As a result, the relevant languages either do not have raising and control proper or have them inasmuch as the embedded clauses of these constructions are intransitive—in which case they have absolutive subjects and the issue of PP subjects does not arise. Similarly, PP-ergative languages systematically avoid anaphors; instead, they make use of reinforced pronouns or mark reflexive and reciprocal meaning on the verb. Thus, potential violations of binding theory simply do not arise.

Keywords:   raising, control, binding principles, anaphors, reinforced pronouns, verbal reflexive marking

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