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Sluicing: Cross-Linguistic Perspectives$
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Jason Merchant and Andrew Simpson

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199645763

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199645763.001.0001

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Sluicing without wh-movement in Malagasy *

Sluicing without wh-movement in Malagasy *

(p.164) 8 Sluicing without wh-movement in Malagasy*
Sluicing: Cross-Linguistic Perspectives

Ileana Paul

Eric Potsdam

Oxford University Press

The standard analysis of sluicing, in which wh-movement is followed by clausal deletion, predicts that sluicing should not be found in languages that do not have wh-movement. Such a conclusion has already been shown to be incorrect for a number of wh-in-situ languages, and it is also incorrect for the Austronesian language Malagasy, which exhibits a construction that has all the hallmarks of sluicing, despite the language being wh-in-situ. The chapter proposes that sluicing in Malagasy does result from clausal deletion. However, the deletion is crucially fed by an operation of predicate-fronting that externalizes the wh-phrase. Predicate-fronting has been independently proposed as a general mechanism to derive the predicate-initial (VOS) word order of certain Austronesian languages, such as Malagasy. The conclusion of the chapter is that sluicing is not a unitary syntactic construction and that different languages use different syntactic means to arrive at the same surface form.

Keywords:   sluicing, Malagasy, Austronesian, predicate-fronting

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