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Re: THEORY: object raising

From:Thomas R. Wier <trwier@...>
Date:Monday, December 20, 2004, 5:38
From:    Henrik Theiling <theiling@...>
> > a. Constantinople is difficult to sack. > > b. It is difficult to sack Constantinople. > > Yes, I though of this, indeed. Unfortunately I don't know what tough > movement is, so I can't judge why it should *not* be the thing I was > searching for. (And it is interesting to find that German has that > movement as well. :-))
Tough-movement, in English, has been one of the thorniest problems to solve in modern linguistics, as it seems to have properties of both raising and control verbs no matter how one analyzes 'raising' and 'control'.
> > ObScure: in Meskwaki, tough-movement constructions also apply to > > subjects. Thus, the equivalent of "The Meskwaki are difficult to like > > the French" would be licit. > > And this is 'It is difficult for the Meskwaki to like the French'?
Right. Note that the English sentence I gave you here is ungrammatical, and should have a star therefore: it applies only to lower-objects in English.
> None of my conlangs can do this. Is there any reason for natlangs to > allow this? (And raising, I mean.)
Honestly, I don't know much about the typology of tough-movement. I would think there's a pretty clear functional motivation for having a tough-predicate (which set also naturally includes things like 'easy' and less obviously 'wonderful' etc.) which has coreferent higher-subject and lower-object, but I don't understand myself the range of possible constraints in other languages. ========================================================================= Thomas Wier "I find it useful to meet my subjects personally, Dept. of Linguistics because our secret police don't get it right University of Chicago half the time." -- octogenarian Sheikh Zayed of 1010 E. 59th Street Abu Dhabi, to a French reporter. Chicago, IL 60637