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Percent RP by Possession and Grammatical Role, target responses only 866 

Percent RP by Possession and Grammatical Role, target responses only 866 

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The use of resumptive pronouns in relative clauses appears to be governed by structural complexity in grammar and usage. Resumptive pronoun distributions across languages typically follow the Noun Phrase Accessibility Hierarchy (Keenan and Comrie 1977, Noun Phrase Accessibility and Universal Grammar, Linguistic Inquiry: 8: 63-99): if the grammar al...

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... RPs. Francis, Lam, Zheng, Hitz, & Matthews (2015) provide data from acceptability and production experiments in Cantonese supporting Hawkins' hypothesis that RPs will be used more, and judged as more acceptable, in more complex dependencies. ...
... Once a preference is fully conventionalized, the grammar only allows one option, and the speaker has no choice. However, languages can present partial grammaticalization (see Francis et al. 2015), whereby the grammar allows multiple options in certain structures. In these cases, speakers' choices can be shaped more directly by processing difficulty. ...
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Although the grammatical status of resumptive pronouns varies from one language to the other, these elements occur in spontaneous speech cross-linguistically, giving rise to a long-held intuition that resumption has a processing function, facilitating production and/or comprehension. In this review, I examine the central threads of thought related to resumption and processing and consider the prominent theories and findings that have shaped the discussion on this issue. I review grammatical and grammaticalization-based approaches to resumption and present the evidence suggesting that resumptive pronouns are a production artifact as well as the evidence that speaks in favor of or against the idea that resumptive pronouns aid comprehension. While the theory that resumption aids the producer receives straightforward support, the findings backing the claim that resumption helps the comprehender are much more equivocal, suggesting that in some cases resumption is not helpful and may even be detrimental to comprehension. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Linguistics, Volume 7 is January 14, 2021. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.
... Besides island environments, another syntactic difficulty analyzed is the level of embedding of the RC (Beltrama and Xiang [2016] and Francis et al. [2015]). If the RC is not at the first level but part of a subordinate clause, or a subordinate of a subordinate etc., then both retrieving its antecedent and processing it in general become harder as the connection with the main verb may be lost or is harder to maintain. ...
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Spanish relative clauses, as in other languages, can contain a resumptive pronoun or other resumptive element. This study attempts to explain what factors favor the presence of such resumptive elements in the production of Spanish relative clauses. In order to do so, 1237 relatives clauses were extracted from an oral corpus of Peninsular Spanish conversations. A total of 18 factors, some new and some known from previous studies, pertaining to semantic and syntactic processing difficulties, were coded as potentially influencing the choice of a resumptive pronoun. Multivariate analysis (conditional tree and random forest) was then used to determine the significant factors and the most explicative minimal model. The results suggest that the conditions with the most impact are related to difficulties in determining the function of the relativizer. A discussion follows about how these difficulties relate to the different factors studied and how they could be due to a looser relationship between the clauses involved.
... Cantonese (Francis et al. 2015), corpus and experimental data show that speakers are more likely to produce an RP as RC complexity increases. These three types of evidence (crosslinguistic patterns of syntactic constraints, language acquisition, and language use) support ...
... We agree that the limited number of token sets limits the generalizability of the results. It will be shown, however, that the results harmonize with recent experimental research performed by Francis et al. (2015) and with data obtained by Ning, Christianson, and Lin (2014). The woman that Paul showed concern to her has left." ...
... Our results, as it turned out, were also largely consistent with the experimental results of Yuan and Zhao (2005), Su (2004), and Ning (2008), Ning et al. (2014), and Francis et al. (2015). 17 Yuan and Zhao (2005) designed an acceptability judgment task in Mandarin Chinese in order to determine the distribution of gaps and RPs in Mandarin Chinese, as a control condition in a study on L2 acquisition of Mandarin. ...
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... Our discussion starts from two previous observations. First, intrusive RPs, though ungrammatical, are systematically found in spontaneous speech and laboratory-based speech production studies (Prince 1990;Creswell 2002;Ferreira & Swets 2005;Bennett 2008; also see Francis et al. 2015 on Cantonese Chinese). Second, linguists' introspective judgments suggest that RPs "sound better" in at least two environments: Island violations and long distance dependencies with multiple embeddings (Ross 1967;Kroch 1981;Sells 1984;Prince 1990;Erteschik-Shir 1992;Asudeh 2004;Asudeh 2011). ...
... experimental literature on resumption and islands in English has primarily focused on wh-islands and relative clause islands. It should be noted thatMcKee & McDaniel (2001) also found that RPs were significantly more preferred than gaps when the extracted element was a genitive object (e.g. "This is the pirate whose Minnie Mouse buried treasure").Francis et al. (2015) more systematically tested resumption in possessive phrases in Cantonese and also found higher acceptability ratings on RPs than gaps. ...
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... Cantonese, like Hebrew and Mandarin Chinese, allows a pronominal (9b) to alternate freely with a gap (9a) in direct object relative clauses ). An experimental study by Francis, Lam, Zheng, Hitz, and Matthews (2015) shows that both variants in Cantonese are grammatical, without any particular semantic or pragmatic implications with either variation. Native speakers rated the gapped variant and the resumptive pronoun variant with a relatively high score (gapped: 5.93 vs. RP: 5.67 on a 7-point scale) in a grammaticality judgment task and the scores for the two options are very close, suggesting that Cantonese speakers find both variants acceptable. ...
... Even though the resumptive pronoun strategy is a legitimate strategy for object relativization in Cantonese, neither adults nor children ever employed it in their object relative clause formation. This suggests that, out of the two, the gap strategy is the preferred, or default, strategy for Cantonese relativization, which echoes with the findings of (24) [ Cantonese (Francis et al., 2015) and Mandarin Chinese (Ning, 2008;Su, 2004). The reason for not finding any use of the resumptive pronoun could be that the cost of producing an overt pronoun in the relativized position is larger than the benefits the processor could enjoy due to its presence. ...
... Another possible reason could be the low frequency of resumptive pronouns in the input. The resumptive pronoun strategy is not frequently adopted in spontaneous speech, according to previous studies in Mandarin (Su, 2004) and Cantonese (Francis et al., 2015). This limits the experience of young children with the use of resumptive pronouns in subject and object relativization of Cantonese. ...
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... Positions other than subject and direct object of the predicate are relativized with the resumptive pronoun strategy, with a resumptive pronoun in the place of the relativized element. Examples (26) Normally, NP positions can only be relativized with one particular strategy, except for the direct object position, which can alternate freely between the gap strategy (27) and the resumptive pronoun strategy (27'), without any particular semantic or pragmatic implications with either variation An experimental study by Francis, Lam, Zheng, Hitz and Matthews (2015) shows that both variants are grammatical in Cantonese. Native speakers rated booth the gapped variant and the resumptive pronoun variant with a relatively high score (gapped: 5.93 vs. RP: 5.67 on a 7-point scale) in a grammaticality judgment task and the scores for the two options are very close, suggesting that Cantonese speakers find both variants acceptable. ...
... Rather than being required in the lower positions and excluded in subject position (as stated in the Cantonese grammars), resumptive pronouns are more likely to be used in the lower positions in the accessibility hierarchy. This gradient pattern is consistent with that observed for adults by Francis et al. (2015). ...
... Materials. We used a character selection task, a modified version of the common picture selection tasks, in which participants heard a test sentence involving a relative clause and were asked to select the character 6 Although it has been stated in the grammar that the resumptive pronoun strategy is only required for relativization of the lower positions, it seems that the resumptive pronoun strategy is always legitimate following the observations in Francis et al. (2015). which the relative clause picked out. ...
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