Restructuring and Reanalysis

M. R. Manzini, 1983

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This thesis, assuming the existence of restructuring and reanalysis processes in grammar, seeks to provide a precise and minimally simple definition of such processes (chapter 2), which successfully applies to restructuring and reanalysis phenomena both held to be such independently of this thesis (causative constructions, chapter 4), and introduced as such in this thesis (middle constructions, chapter 3).

Chapter 2 comprises the theoretical core of the thesis.  Section 2.1 seeks to formalize the intuitive idea that restructuring is defined by the presence of more than one structure for one and the same sentence in one and the same level of grammar.  Section 2.2 seeks to formalize the intuitive idea that reanalysis is defined by the merger of the subcategorization properties of another element.

Chapters 3 and 4, on the other hand, comprise the core of the thesis" empirical discussion.  Chapter 3, in particular, uses middle constructions, concretely Italian si constructions, to illustrate the theory of restructuring arrived at in section 2.1; while chapter 4 uses causative constructions, concretely in French, to illustrate the theory of reanalysis arrived at in section 2.2.

Various theoretical and empirical issues essentially independent of restructuring and reanalysis are taken up in the course of the thesis as the opportunity presents itself.  Perhaps the most sizable example of this is to be found in chapter 3; where, in taking into consideration Italian si for the purposes of restructuring, we independently present what to our knowledge is the first unified theory of its impersonal and reflexive constructions, as well as of its middle ones.

Thesis Supervisor:         Noam Chomsky

Title:                             Institute Professor

Table of Contents

1          Introduction                                                                                                      5

2          Restructuring and reanalysis                                                                              12

            2.1       Restructuring                                                                                        13

            2.2       Reanalysis                                                                                            37

3          Middle constructions                                                                                         63

            3.1       Italian si and si constructions                                                                 64

            3.2       More si and other constructions                                                            118

            3.3       The PF and LF of si constructions                                                         145

4          Causative constructions                                                                         166

            4.1       French causative constructions                                                  167

            4.2       More causative constructions                                                                209