Scrambling in Korean: Crossover, reconstruction and binding theory

Date of Completion

January 1994


Language, Linguistics




Within the framework of minimalist program proposed by Chomsky (1992), this thesis explores scrambling in Korean with respect to crossover, reconstruction effects and binding phenomena and characterizes properties of movement types, their target positions and traces (or copies).^ Chapter 2 examines syntactic properties of scrambling with respect to crossover phenomena, which cannot be well accounted for by the traditional $\rm A/A\sp\prime$ distinction. We show that scrambling is distinguished from other operator movements, such as Wh-movement and QR, and provide evidence for the existence of a non-operator $\rm A\sp\prime$-position (a broadly L-related position in Chomsky's term) as the landing site of scrambling. We suggest that scrambling in Korean, as non-operator $\rm A\sp\prime$-movement, leaves behind not a variable, but a null epithet. We therefore demonstrate that the lack of WCO effects in scrambling constructions is due to a null epithet, which is not subject to WCO effects.^ In Chapter 3, we argue that scrambling involves three different types of syntactic operations, i.e., a TopP-adjunction operation, an IP-adjunction operation and a substitution operation to SPEC (AGRo). We show that scrambling across a subject, as non-operator $\rm A\sp\prime$-movement, creates a null epithet immune to WCO effects, and an anaphor can take as its antecedent the element in non-operator position. Observing that scrambling across a topic yields WCO effects and does not create a new anaphor binding possibility, we claim that scrambling across a topic, as movement to an operator position, leaves behind a variable subject to WCO effects, and the element in operator position cannot serve as an antecedent for an anaphor. We then deal with short scrambling and attribute the lack of reconstruction effects to the A-movement property of short scrambling.^ In Chapter 4, we maintain that the copy of $\rm A\sp\prime$-movement remains whereas that of A-movement deletes at LF and that Binding conditions, as conditions involving interpretation, apply at the LF interface level. We show that scrambled direct objects in Korean are preposed to SPEC (AGRo) and then to the sentence-initial position. Finally, we demonstrate that in Korean, what raises to SPEC (AGRo) for Case-checking at LF is not a direct object in-situ but its accusative Case feature. ^