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Syntax Brown Bag

Kunio Kinjo (Rutgers)

Friday, April 21, 10:15 a.m.

10 WP, 103

Agree by minimal search: A probe-free model of agreement

In this talk, I present a new model of Agree, elaborating the idea speculated in Chomsky (2013, 2015) that labeling and agreement employ the same search procedure (minimal search, MS). Specifically, I propose that MS, whether it is employed for labeling or agreement, applies at the phase level and cannot see lower copies. When it is employed for Agree, MS scans a phase from its root node and establishes Agree relations between matching features successively in a top-down fashion. With this model, I examine various verbal agreement patterns, mainly focusing on Bantu languages, where more than two φ-bearing elements appear within a CP phase: verbal agreement in the subject inversion constructions (Kinyalolo 1991; Baker 2008 a.o.), hyperagreement in the complex tense construction (Henderson 2006; Carstens 2011 a.o.), and alternative-agreement (a.k.a antiagreement) in subject extraction contexts (Ouhalla 1993; Schneider-Zioga 2007; Diercks 2010; Henderson 2013 a.o.).