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(Anti-)Control in German: evidence from comparative, corpus- and psycholinguistic studies

  • The present investigation targets the phenomenon commonly called control. Many languages including German and Polish employ non-finite clauses (besides finite clauses) as propositional complements. The subject of these complement clauses is left unexpressed and must generally be interpreted co-referentially with the subject or object of the matrix clause (subject or object control). However. there are also infinitive-selecting verbs that do not allow for a co- referential interpretation of the embedded subject - semantically, the embedded infinitives of these anti-control verbs are thus less dependent on or less unifiable with the matrix proposition. In Polish anti-control constructions, non-finite complements are overtly marked with the complementizer zeby, suggesting that they are structurally more complex (namely. containing a C-projection) than the non-finite complements in control constructions lacking zeby (modulo special contexts. viz. 'control switch'). In a comparative perspective, the paper brings corpuslinguistic and experimental evidence to bear on the question whether surface appearances notwithstanding, the infinitival complements of anti-control verbs in German should similarly be analyzed as truly sentential, i.e., C-headed structures.
Author:Patrick BrandtGND, Beata Trawiński, Angelika WöllsteinGND
Parent Title (English):Co- and subordination in German and other languages
Series (Serial Number):Linguistische Berichte - Sonderhefte (21)
Place of publication:Hamburg
Document Type:Article
Year of first Publication:2016
Date of Publication (online):2016/12/22
First Page:77
Last Page:98
DDC classes:400 Sprache / 400 Sprache, Linguistik
Open Access?:ja
Leibniz-Classification:Sprache, Linguistik
Licence (German):License LogoUrheberrechtlich geschützt