Linguistics 225A: Seminar in Syntactic Theory - Ellipsis

Spring Quarter, (2011-)2012
Wednesdays: 2:15--5:05 in 240-110

Instructor Info:

Ivan A. Sag Office: Bldg 460 (MJH), Room 103. Tel: 723-1578
Office Hours:TBA
Email:sag at stanford period edu

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Course Description:

An overview of work on ellipsis during the last 40 years, with special emphasis on English. Particular emphasis on the most studied English ellipsis constructions: VP Ellipsis and Sluicing. Prerequisites: Some background in syntax and semantics and an open mind. Nonstudent participants and auditors welcome.


Enrolled students are expected:

  1. to attend class lectures,
  2. to complete the assigned readings in a timely fashion,
  3. to lead a class discussion of two or more of the readings, and
  4. to complete a research project on a relevant topic, either as an individual experiment/paper or as part of a group project.

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Syllabus (Dates are links)

4/4 Introduction. What is ellipsis? Ellipsis and anaphora: the 4 questions. Taxonomies of ellipsis/anaphora. Basic properties of VP Ellipsis.
4/11 What is the right identity condition for VPE? No Class :-(
4/18 Is pragmatic control of VPE possible?
4/25Experimental investigations of Types of Anaphora
5/2 Active/Passive Mismatches in VP Ellipsis: Competence or Performance.
5/9 Taking stock of VPE. What people really say.
5/16 Sluicing: An overview of the phenomenon. Merchant's theory.
5/23 Sluicing and Preposition Stranding
5/30 Sluicing without Deletion: QUD-based Interpretation
6/6 Wrap-Up. Our Project. Experiments.

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Last updated 1 April 2012 by Ivan A. Sag.