Wholesale late merger in Ā-movement: Evidence from preposition stranding

Juliet Stanton

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    To account for several asymmetries between A- and Ā-movement, Takahashi and Hulsey (2009) generalize the late merger option (Lebeaux 1988, Chomsky 1995) as wholesale late merger (WLM). In particular, allowing an NP to merge with a head D as late as (but no later than) its Case position explains why Ā- but not A-movement displays Principle C reconstruction effects. In this article, I claim that WLM is also responsible for pervasive asymmetries within the class of Ā-extractions. The evidence comes from restrictions on English preposition stranding. I document a correlation between a preposition’s complementation properties and its ability to be stranded: prepositions that disallow pronominal complements can only be stranded by a subset of Ā-extractions. I argue that the extractions allowing pronounrejecting prepositions to be stranded disallow WLM, while those that disallow the stranding allow (and require) WLM.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)89-126
    Number of pages38
    JournalLinguistic Inquiry
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - Jan 1 2016


    • (wholesale) late merger
    • Antipronominal contexts
    • Preposition stranding
    • Ā -movement

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Language and Linguistics
    • Linguistics and Language


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