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# Word order agreement and pronominalisation in standard and Palestinian Arabic

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... A notion that is relevant here is that C 0 ʔinn in some Arabic varieties displays U-agreement with the subject of the embedded clause. This agreement is manifested by virtue of an inflectional suffix that is attached to C 0 ʔinn, a phenomenon known as clitic doubling in some related literature of Arabic (Mohammad, 1990(Mohammad, , 2000Omari, 2011;Ahmed, 2015). As is shown in the data from RJA (2) below, C 0 ʔinn displays full U-feature agreement with the embedded subject. ...
... We suggest, however, that this pro does not move to Spec, TP to satisfy EPP requirements. Instead, EPP is satisfied by an expletive pro that directly merges in Spec, TP (see Mohammad, 2000). ...
... In fact, almost all literature on preverbal subjects in SA argues that a preverbal subject should be treated as a topic rather than a true subject in Spec, TP (cf. Fassi Fehri, 1993;Ouhalla, 1997;Mohammad, 2000;Soltan, 2007;Musabhien, 2009;Aoun et al., 2009, among many others). One piece of empirical evidence supporting this view comes from the distribution of preverbal subjects. ...
Article
The present paper explores φ-agreement patterns between C0 ʔinn ‘that’ and the local subject in eight Arabic dialects. Four distinct patterns of φ-agreement are identified. In Pattern I dialects, C0 displays obligatory φ-agreement with a pro subject but optional φ-agreement with the non-pro subject. In Pattern II dialects, C0 shows obligatory φ-agreement with a pro subject but no φ-agreement with the non-pro subject. In Pattern III dialects, C0 shows optional φ-agreement with a pro subject but no φ-agreement with the non-pro subject. Finally, in Pattern IV dialects, C0 displays no φ-agreement with the pro- or non-pro subjects. To account for these asymmetrical patterns of complementizer agreement (or lack thereof), we propose that C0 ʔinn always merges under Fin0 (where it acts as a probe (cf. Chomsky 2000)) and afterward moves to Force0 to check the Force feature. Additionally, we show that these four patterns arise due to the interaction of the interplay of the φ-content of C0 and the structural position and nature of the subject (e.g., whether it is a lexical subject, referential pro, or expletive pro).
... predominate) word order used. In MSA, the unmarked word order is, as widely assumed in the related literature, the VSO word order (see Bakir, 1980;El-Yasin, 1985;Fassi Fehri, 1993;Jarrah, 2020; among many others), whereas the SVO word order is the predominate word order in JA which shares this property of word order with almost all other Arabic vernaculars (see Aoun et al., 1994 for Lebanese Arabic; Mohammad, 2000 for Palestinian Arabic; Benmamoun, 2000 for Egyptian Arabic;Fassi Fehri, 1993 for Moroccan Arabic; see also Jarrah, 2017Jarrah, , 2019a for more discussion about word order in JA). 2 However, although the two varieties are different regarding the selection of the predominate word order, they are mutually intelligible. This situation clearly excludes any possibility that the lexicon of each variety affects its syntax or the mechanisms of word order formation. ...
... Examining almost all VP idiomatic expressions in MSA, it is clear that VP idiomatic expressions should occur in clauses with VSO word order, which is widely considered the unmarked (predominate) order in this Arabic variety (see Mohammad, 1990Mohammad, , 2000Fassi Fehri, 1993Aoun et al., 1994;Shlonsky, 1997;Benmamoun, 2000;Aoun et al., 2010;and Jarrah, 2019a). Consider the following examples: 4,5 (1) ʔibtalaʕa ʔal-muharribu:n ʔatˤ-tˤoʕm-a swallowed.3SG.M DEF-smugglers.NOM DEF-bait-ACC Lit. ...
... This is why the verb in (2) is attached to a 3PL.M morpheme. See Mohammad (1990Mohammad ( , 2000, Fassi Fehri (1993), Aoun et al. (1994), Shlonsky (1997); Benmamoun (2000), Aoun et al. (2010), and Jarrah (2020) for proposals and discussions. 6 Note here that the use of a modal/hypothetical particle does not cancel idiomaticity, as long as the right word order is used. ...
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This research paper investigates the syntax of idiomatic expressions consisting of the verb and the object/accompanying adjunct (VP idiomatic expressions, henceforth) in two Arabic varieties: Modern Standard Arabic (MSA) and Jordanian Arabic (JA). It shows that in order for VP idiomatic expressions to obtain their idiomatic reading, the predominate pattern of the word order in each variety (i.e., the VSO word order in MSA, but the SVO word order in JA) should be used; otherwise idiomaticity is not possible (with few exceptional cases discussed in the paper). We offer evidence that this restriction on the idiomaticity of VP idiomatic expressions in Arabic varieties follows from a proposed condition that the subject (even if it is not part of the idiomatic expression) and the verb (in addition to the object) should maintain a structurally local relation with each other in the narrow syntax, i.e. they should be included in the vP phase before the spell-out point. The paper shows that the movement of the verb to T0 in MSA and JA or lack thereof does not break idiomaticity, nor does the movement of the subject to Spec,TP in JA. These facts are taken as an indication that a distinction between narrow-syntax and post-spellout movements should be made. This provides evidence for proposals that distinguish between pre- and post-spellout movements (cf. Chomsky 2001, among others).
... Our main departure from Alahdal's (2018) account of preverbal DPs in NSLs comes from the assumption that the structural status of the preverbal DPs, mainly subjects, in NSLs should not be the same in all NSLs. For example, it has been widely argued in the related literature on Arabic varieties that MSA is different from other Arabic dialects in that the VSO word order in MSA is viewed as the canonical word order, whereas the SVO is the predominate word order in almost other Arabic varieties (see Bakir, 1980;Ayoub, 1981;Farghal, 1986;Mohammad, , 2000Shlonsky, 1997;Akkal and Gonegai, 2000;Soltan, 2007;Jouini, 2014;Benmamoun, 2017). This obvious difference between MSA and Arabic dialects has given rise to several analytic assumptions that the structural position occupied by the subject in MSA is different from the one that is occupied by the subject in Arabic dialects. ...
... However, we argue that this assumption should be reconsidered. Note first that main literature on Arabic vernaculars propose that the predominate word order in Arabic dialects is SVO, where the preverbal subject is normally positioned in Spec,TP/IP, a position that is not affiliated with any discourse property (Ayoub, 1981;Fassi Fehri, 1988;Mohammad, , 2000Akkal and Gonegai, 2000;Soltan, 2007;and Jouini, 2014, along these lines, and Benmamoun, 2017 for a general overview). Following this line of analysis, a preverbal subject which is an indefinite, nonspecific element is expected. ...
... (27) alruasaa raHaluu the.presidents left-3pm 'The presidents stepped down.' Note in passing that such agreement asymmetries between VSO and SVO word orders disappear in Arabic dialects, where the preverbal subject is widely treated as a true subject rather than a topic (see Mohammad, 2000). ...
Article
In this paper, we first argue against Alahdal's (2018) account of feature inheritance of the Edge Feature (EF) from C0 to T0 in null subject languages (NSLs), including (Modern Standard) Arabic. Alahdal proposes that Spec,TP becomes a position that exhibits A/A-bar properties in Arabic when T0 inherits EF from C0. We explore the defects of this argument, highlighting its conceptual and empirical inconsistencies. We also show that this argument suffers from internal problems which speak against its theoretical validity. Second, we present an alternative approach to the relevant data. We propose that a preverbal element in Modern Standard Arabic (and other NSLs with a prominent VSO word order) is either a topic or a focus, depending on its informational content. The preverbal element is located in a dedicated A-bar position in the CP domain of the clause. All A-properties of preverbal elements are assumed to be indirect effects of their clause-initial position.
... Such valuation, if any, is executed through the Agree operation (Chomsky 2000(Chomsky , 2001 that is established between Pinn and some other element to the extent that locality constraints allow it. This stand on the status of such bound forms implies our departure from traditional Arabic grammar and other works inspired by it, in which such forms are regarded as pronominal clitics, resulted from some pronominal incorporation into the head Pinn (see Mohammad 1990Mohammad , 2000. 3 Our hypothesis that the bound forms attached to Pinn are inflectional suffixes is similar to Shlonsky's (1997: 175) approach to Semitic bound forms. Shlonsky proposes that what appears as clitics or incorporated pronouns on lexical and some functional categories including Pinn are all instances of agreement, labeled as [2] Pinn has several phonological alternants across Arabic varieties, including Modern Standard Arabic Pinna and Panna, Lebanese Arabic P@nn, and Jordanian Arabic Pinn. ...
... Although there are some endeavours in related literature which have given some accounts of such bound forms, albeit exclusively for MSA, e.g. Mohammad (1990Mohammad ( , 2000, the issue is not yet resolved given that such accounts have been posited in a way that is apparently indifferent to cross-linguistic evidence, as will be shown below (Section 3). This research sheds light on these questions, attempting to provide an answer for all of them in light of the latest advancements of the Minimalist Program, most notably Phase Theory and Feature Inheritance (Chomsky 2000(Chomsky , 2001(Chomsky , 2005(Chomsky , 2007(Chomsky , 2008, and related works by other researchers). ...
... In a clause with VSO word order, 4 an inflectional suffix is forced to appear on Pinn, irrespective of the subject being used or dropped, as the following examples demonstrate: [4] A consensual view appears to hold among researchers on Arabic sentence structure that VSO is the unmarked word order in MSA. See Bakir 1980, EI-Yasin 1985, Moutaouakil 1989, Shlonsky 1997, Mohammad 2000, and Aoun et al. 2010 for discussion (we will return to this assumption in Section 6). For Fassi Fehri (Fassi Fehri 1993: 19) VSO is the unmarked word order in MSA, as it is 'the order found in so-called pragmatically neutral sentences, i.e. in sentences which require few mechanisms of interpretation and derivation'. ...
Article
This research investigates the morpho-syntactic behaviour of the Arabic complementizer ʔinn in a range of Arabic varieties (Modern Standard Arabic, Jordanian Arabic, and Lebanese Arabic). It essentially argues that this complementizer shares (not donates or keeps , pace Ouali 2008, 2011) its unvalued $\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}$ -features with its complement $\text{T}^{0}$ , something that makes ʔinn and $\text{T}^{0}$ separate agreeing heads. An inflectional suffix attached to ʔinn is treated as a PF reflex (i.e. an overt morphological realization) of valuation of ʔinn ’s unvalued $\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}$ -features or lack thereof. This research also argues that the occurrence of such an inflectional suffix is ruled by the postulated Agree Chain Record , an interface condition that demands an Agree relation to have a PF reflex, called a Record (i.e. an overt Case marking on the goal or, if not, a $\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}$ -affix on the probe). This way, we account for the complementary distribution of overt Case and $\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}$ -Agree in Arabic. We also show how a host of other phenomena, including word order agreement asymmetries in Modern Standard Arabic and lack of such asymmetries in Arabic vernaculars, fares well with this view.
... Previous research on word order in Arabic mainly draws on decontextualized and intuitive examples (mainly from written Arabic) to show that a particular word order is the basic word order in Arabic varieties (Bakir 1980;El-Yasin 1985;Mohammad 2000;Ouhalla 2004 order in spoken Arabic although they do not adopt a systematic community-based approach (e.g., Dahlgren 1998Dahlgren , 2001Brustad 2000). ...
... JA permits both overt and null subject pronouns as can be seen in (1.4-5). Subjects in Arabic are mainly approached from a syntactic point of view (Abdo 1983;Bakir 1980;Aoun & Li 1993;Fassi Fehri 1993;Mohammad 2000). Previous sociolinguistic research on variable expression of subject in Arabic is limited (Owens et al. 2009(Owens et al. , 2010(Owens et al. , 2013Omari 2011). ...
... Several studies investigating phonetic, syntactic and morphological features of these dialects have appeared (e.g. Aoun & Li 1993;Fassi Fehri 1993;Mohammad 2000;Ouhalla 2004;Aoun, Benmamoun & Chouiri 2010;among others). But few studies investigate word order in modern colloquial varieties of Arabic (Dahlgren 1998;Brustad 2000;Owens et al. 2009;Edwards 2010 andHoles 2010). ...
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This study investigates some aspects of grammatical variation in vernacular Jordanian Arabic (JA), namely word order variation and pro(noun)-drop variation. Much previous research on word order and subject expression in Arabic has been hampered by the use of eclectic methodologies (Bakir 1980; Eid 1983; El-Yasin 1985; Fassi Fehri 1993; Aoun & Li 1993; Brustad 2000). Conspicuously rare in contemporary studies of syntactic variation in Arabic are systematic analyses of spontaneous speech data (Edwards 2010: 94; but see e.g., Owens, Dodsworth & Rockwood 2009; Owens, Dodsworth & Kohn 2013). The dearth of quantitative studies of word order variation, as well as pro-drop variation, in colloquial Arabic provides the primary motivation for the present investigation. Drawing on the framework of variationist sociolinguistics (Labov 1972), I conduct an accountable analysis of word order variation, as well as pro-drop variation in a corpus of vernacular Jordanian Arabic recorded in the Irbid metropolitan area in 2014. The corpus is based on over 30 hours of digitized recordings obtained from 30 speakers stratified by age, sex, education, as well as urban/rural origin. I exploit these spontaneous speech data to: (i) assess the frequency of different word order and pro-drop variants in vernacular JA; (ii) ascertain which social and linguistic factors constrain the selection of major word order and pro-drop variants; and (iii) determine whether the apparent time component incorporated into the research design reveals any evidence of change in progress. Distributional and multivariate analyses of 4500 tokens (2049 for word order and 2422 for pro-drop) coded for the aforementioned social factors, in addition to an array of linguistic factors hypothesized to constrain variant choice (e.g., morphloexical class of subject, grammatical person and number, type of clause and transitivity) confirm that word order variation, as well as pro-drop variation, are subject to multiple constraints (Holes 1995; Owens et al. 2013). A first important finding concerns the quantitative preponderance of SV(O) word order in vernacular JA, which competes with less frequent VS(O). Another important finding is that null subject pronouns are the norm in vernacular JA. Statistical analyses of the linguistic factors conditioning the observed variability reveal that transitivity and definite subject pronouns are key predictors of SV(O) word order choice, while switch reference and person and number of subject are key predictors of overt subject pronouns, as determined by the relative magnitude of these effects. Particularly compelling is the social embedding of the variation in the case of word order variation. Age- and sex-differentiations in the data (Labov 1990), in addition to urban-rural split, reveal statistically significant differences, offering provisional indications that alternation between SV(O) and VS(O) word orders is implicated in ongoing change. Younger speakers, women and urban-origin speakers lead in the use of SV(O). The results foreground the utility of empirically accountable analyses of spontaneous speech in elucidating key issues relating to syntactic variation in modern varieties of spoken Arabic. The results generated by this approach reveal new findings not previously available from the intuited, elicited or written material on which much previous work on Arabic has been based.
... VSO) the subject immediately follows the verb while in the latter the subject (if the preverbal subject NP proves to be a subject) precedes the verb. It has been observed in SA that agreement patterns on the verb morphology are visibly associated with these word orders (Mohammad, 1990(Mohammad, , 2000Aoun et al, 1994;Fassi Fehri, 2005;Benmamoun, 2000a;andFakih, 2012, 2015). ...
... A closer look at the previous analyses on agreement in SA reveals that such accounts adopt Koopman and Sportiche's (1991) VP-Internal Subject Hypothesis which postulates that the postverbal subject originates in Spec-VP. On the other hand, the preverbal subject in VSO constructions moves from Spec-VP to Spec-TP; this movement is motivated by an EPP feature on T, as seen in (Aoun et la, 1994;Ouhallah, 1994;Mohammad, 1990Mohammad, , 2000and Mahfoudhi, 2002, among others. In this section I review different accounts on agreement in SA. ...
... Furthermore, building on Pollock's (1989) work, Mohammad (1990Mohammad ( , 2000 revisits the analysis of agreement asymmetry in SA and proposes what he calls the 'null expletive hypothesis.' Mohammad claims that agreement is determined under Spec-head configuration. The verb which exhibits grammatical agreement is in the head position T, while an item which determines partial or full agreement on the verb is located in a Spec of TP. ...
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This study investigates agreement in VSO and SVO word orders in Standard Arabic (henceforth, SA), shows how VSO and SVO are derived in the syntax, and proposes an alternative analysis based on Chomsky' (2005) feature-based-inheritance approach, which seeks to provide a unified account on the subject. The objective is to explore the interaction between the SA data and Chomsky's feature inheritance analysis. It shows that whether the subject (i.e. the goal with which C agrees) in Spec-v*P in VSO order or in Spec-TopP (=Topic Phrase) in SVO order, the Agree relation can apply and all unvalued uninterpretable features are valued and deleted by matching them with their valued interpretable counterparts. Furthermore, I argue that since the edge feature of the head C of the CP phase is inherited by the Top head, the topicalised elements in Standard Arabic are raised from lower positions to Spec-TopP in SVO order, not the specifier of CP, as assumed in Chomsky (2005). Besides, the paper points out that in SA the features of T in VSO order and the features of T and Top in SVO order are inherited from C, the head of the CP phase. It also adopts Rizzi's (1997) Spilt-CP analysis and proposes a modification of Chomsky's (2005) clause structure in order to account for the position of the topicalised subject in SVO in SA.
... The same word order alternations have been attested in other dialects of Arabic such as Standard Arabic (Mohammed 2000;Fassi Fehri 1993;Aoun et al. 2010), Palestinian Arabic (Mohammed 2000), Moroccan Arabic (Benmamoun 2000;Aoun et al. 2010), and Lebanese Arabic (Aoun et al. 2010). ...
... The same word order alternations have been attested in other dialects of Arabic such as Standard Arabic (Mohammed 2000;Fassi Fehri 1993;Aoun et al. 2010), Palestinian Arabic (Mohammed 2000), Moroccan Arabic (Benmamoun 2000;Aoun et al. 2010), and Lebanese Arabic (Aoun et al. 2010). ...
... Under one hypothesis, the preverbal subject is analyzed as a genuine subject in Spec, TP (Mohammed 1990(Mohammed , 2000Bolotin 1995;Benmamoun 2000;Bahloul and Herbert 2002). I will refer to this analysis as the Subject Hypothesis. ...
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This study investigates the licensing conditions on Negative Sensitive Items (NSIs) in Jordanian Arabic (JA). JA exhibits both types of NSIs that are discussed in the literature: Negative Polarity Items (NPIs) and Negative Concord Items (NCIs). Although these two sets of items seem to form a natural class in the sense that they show certain sensitivity to negation, they display important distributional differences that call for different analyses. First, NCIs can sometimes express negation on their own as in fragment answers; whereas NPIs cannot do so. Second, the licensing of NCIs is clause-bound; whereas the licensing of NPIs is not. Third, NPIs are acceptable in a number of contexts that do not involve overt negation; whereas NCIs are acceptable in only a subset of these contexts, namely without-clauses and before-clauses. The licensing of NPIs and NCIs in JA is discussed in light of previous theories that are mainly based on the distribution of these items in English and European languages. The investigation of NPI licensing in JA shows that the distribution of these items can best be captured by the semantic notion of (Non-)veridicality (Giannakidou 1998, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2006, 2011). Data from JA show that NPIs in the language need to be in the c-command domain of a non-veridical function at LF as proposed by the (Non)-veridicality Approach. The investigation of NCI licensing in JA shows that none of the NCI licensing theories previously proposed in the literature extends to JA. Alternatively, an account is proposed that is basically a crucial modification of the Non-negative Indefinites Approach (Zeijlstra 2004, 2008; Penka 2007, 2011) which takes Negative Concord to be a manifestation of syntactic agreement between an NCI and a semantic negation in the clause, where syntactic agreement is defined in terms of feature checking following recent assumptions within Minimalism (Chomsky 1995, 1998, 2000, 2001). I argue that NCIs are non-negative indefinites that are endowed with an [uNEG]-feature that needs to be checked against an [iNEG]-feature of a semantic negation that can be either overt or abstract in the clause. I also propose that Spec-head agreement and Head complement agreement exist side by side with c-command as licensing configurations for NCIs. I further argue that the level of representation at which NCI licensing takes place is not the same among all NCIs: while some NCIs are licensed at LF, other NCIs are licensed in the surface syntax. I show that this alternative account can capture the distribution of NCIs in JA. I also show that this account extends to NCIs in other languages such as Moroccan Arabic, Polish, and Spanish and is thus supported cross-linguistically.
... Agreement asymmetry in different varieties of Arabic has been tackled by many Arab and Western linguists, such as Ghaly (1995), Benmamoun (1998), Mohammad (1999), Mahfoudi (2002), Bahloul (2002). Gender agreement has been given little or no attention. ...
... The movement of the verb from I inside the IP to the focus position in the FP leads to the loss of number agreement. Thus, the syntactic derivation of an SVO sentence, such as (3), will be as (4) illustrates; and the syntactic derivation of a VSO sentence, such as (5), will be as (6) (Aount et al., 1994, p.195) Going a little bit further than Aoun (1994), Benmamoun (1998) argues that since number the number feature is an interpretable and intrinsic feature of the noun (Chomsky, 1995), the merger Mohammad (1999) argues that a null-PF pronoun exists in the [Spec, IP] position in Arabic VSO clauses which is responsible for the default third-person masculine singular agreement in expletive clauses, as well as the default singular agreement in VSO regular clauses. The main idea behind Mohammad's analysis is that in SVO sentences an incorporated null pronoun with the appropriate features is enumerated from the lexicon and generated in the canonical subject position (i.e. ...
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Agreement asymmetry is one of the significant linguistic phenomena that Arab and Western linguists (Ghaly,1995; Parkinson, 1995; Benmamoun,1998; Collins, 2001; Dayf, 1986) and Aoun, 1994) have tried to account for within the framework of the Government and Binding theory. They focused upon the number asymmetry in different varieties in Arabic. Most linguists assert that in different types of Arabic there is always gender agreement between the subject and the verb. This study aims at giving much evidence for the lack of gender agreement in Modern Standard Arabic(MSA), and at accounting this gender asymmetry within the framework of the Minimality Program (Chomsky, 1995). The sample consists of 37 sentences collected from some Arabic textbooks. To analyze the data collected, a qualitative diagnostic research design was adopted. One of the essential findings of this study is that there is no gender agreement in Verb-Subject-Object (VSO) sentences between the postverbal subject and the verb if the subject is (a) an unreal feminine Noun Phrase (NP), (b) a broken plural NP, (c) an inanimate collective NP, (d) a collective NP, (e) a regular sound feminine plural NP, (f) an irregular sound feminine plural NP, (g) an irregular sound masculine plural NP, and (h) a real feminine NP separated from its verb by any category. This study concludes that the head C in VSO sentences in MSA carries a weak gender feature represented as [-Strong]. Therefore, in VSO sentences, if the verb disagrees with its subject in gender, it will move from V to I and then to C because C is [-Strong]. A final conclusion is that the head I in VSO sentences in MSA carries a strong gender feature, represented as [+Strong]. Therefore, in VSO sentences, if the verb and its subject agree in gender, the verb will move from V to I; it will not move further.
... Within this framework, there are some analyses for the asymmetry in the agreement in MSA. One analysis is the null expletive analysis which is proposed by Mohammad (1990Mohammad ( , 2000, Ouhalla (1994) and others. Under this analysis, the full agreement with the preverbal subject is the result of the relationship between the head which is occupied by the verb and its specifier which is occupied by the lexical subject which is not a topic. ...
... Within this framework, there are some analyses for the asymmetry in the agreement in MSA. One analysis is the null expletive analysis which is proposed by Mohammad (1990Mohammad ( , 2000, Ouhalla (1994) and others. Under this analysis, the full agreement with the preverbal subject is the result of the relationship between the head which is occupied by the verb and its specifier which is occupied by the lexical subject which is not a topic. ...
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The present study deals with a comparative study of subject verb agreement in modern standard Arabic and Iraqi Arabic. It aims to show the differences and similarities between these two varieties. It is hypothesized that Iraqi dialect has full agreement between the subject and the verb whereas Modern Standard Arabic in has only partial agreement. Data were collected from authentic books of Arabic and from native speakers of Iraqi Arabic in Baghdad. The goal of this study then, is to raise the awareness of Learners as natives on the issues of sounds, grammar, and vocabulary since Arabic language lacks such dialectal research. The study concludes that there are similarities and differences in both varieties. The findings and conclusions arrived at in this study are expected to be worthy to pedagogical planners and planning, and for other academic purposes.
... Other studies have investigated extensively the interpretation of the postverbal and the preverbal subjects assuming the preverbal are best analyzed as left dislocated items (Plunkett 1993;Ouhalla 1997). Between these two streams, many authors have attempted to account for the correlation between subject positions and agreement (Fassi Fehri 1993, 2005Shlonsky 1997;Mohammad 2000;Benmamoun & Lorimor 2006, among others). This correlation is the topic discussed in this paper. ...
... The second strand of analysis is undertaken by, among many others, Mohammad (2000), Fassi Fehri (1993, 2005, Shlonsky (1997), Aoun et al. (1994) and Demirdache (1991). These authors assume that the preverbal noun phrases in sentences such as those in (2b) and (3b) above are actually subjects and they consider the suffixes -uu and -na plural number agreement markers. ...
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This paper addresses the issue of agreement in Modern Standard Arabic by adopting the most recent version of Chomsky's Minimalist Program. Under Chomsky's assumptions, phase heads carry Agree-features and when these features, which are responsible for the derivational processes, are valued and deleted, the derivation ceases. Agreement alternation in different word orders is not expected if verbal Agreement is determined by the Agree-features on the phase head. Thus, the paper argues against the view that SVO word order is an alternative to VSO. Rather, it claims that the subject in SVO is a topic which undergoes movement from a postverbal position to the specifier of TP to satisfy an Edge Feature on T. The moved subject leaves a pronounceable pronominal copy in its original position; this pronominal element does not exist in VSO because the subject does not undergo any type of movement.
... In order to account for this asymmetry, which refers to the difference in the agreement pattern according to a difference in the word order in SA, a number of proposals have been proposed and argued for among which are the null expletive analysis (Mohammad, 1990(Mohammad, , 2000Ouhalla, 1994;Olarrea, 1996;Soltan, 2007;and Al-Horais, 2009, among others), agreement loss analysis (Aoun et al 1994), and a base-generation analysis (Soltan, 2006(Soltan, , 2007. The objective was to provide a unified account on the subject under discussion. ...
... On the other hand, partial agreement in VSO word order is viewed to be the outcome of the same relation but between the verb on T and a null expletive on its Spec. Mohammad's (1990Mohammad's ( , 2000 analysis can be demonstrated in (4) below where he assumes that the null expletive should be third person singular in order to account for the partial agreement phenomenon in Standard Arabic (Other analyses in this regard are also seen in Soltan, 2007 andAl-Horais, 2009). ...
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The paper aims to explore word order derivation and agreement in Najran Arabic (henceforth, NA) and examines the interaction between the NA data and Chomsky’s (2001, 2005) Agree theory which we adopt in this study. The objective is to investigate how word order occurs in NA and provide a satisfactorily unified account of the derivation of SVO and VSO orders and agreement in the language. Furthermore, the study shows how SVO and VSO word orders are derived morpho-syntactically in NA syntax and why and how the derivation of SVO word order comes after that of VSO order. We assume that the derivation of the unmarked SVO in NA takes place after applying a further step to the marked VSO. We propose that the default unmarked word order in NA is SVO, not VSO. Moreover, we propose that the DP which is base-generated in [Spec-vP] is a topic, not a subject. We adopt Rizzy’s split-CP hypothesis on the basis of which we assume the existence of a Top Phrase (TopP) projection in the clause structure of NA. We postulate that the phase head C passes its ϕ-features to the functional head T and the Edge feature to TopP. We assume that T in VSO lacks the Edge feature which motivates movement of the subject DP to [Spec-TP]. As a consequence, the subject of VSO structure remains in situ in the subject position of [Spec-vP]. In addition, it explores subject-verb agreement asymmetry (henceforth, SVAA) and shows that the asymmetry in NA is not related to word order differences but rather to gender agreement differences.
... EA is similar to other Arabic dialects with regard to the formation of wh-questions (e.g. wahba 1984, holes 1990, watson 1993, Aoun and choueiri 1996, Brustad 2000, Benmamoun 2000, Mohammad 2000, choueiri 2002, Aoun and Li 2003, Aoun, Benmamoun and choueiri 2010. for the first type which is attested 1. ...
... (2) a. [ it has been proposed in various works (e.g. Aoun and choueiri 1996, Brustad 2000, Mohammad 2000, choueiri 2002, Aoun and Li 2003, Aoun et al. 2010) that Arabic wh-fronting is formed by overt wh-movement. This claim is attested in EA mainly by means of island constraints (Ross 1967 Another argument that wh-fronting involves overt wh-movement comes from superiority effects (chomsky 1973). ...
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Recent studies of sluicing as an elliptical construction are divided with respect to how the bare wh-word in the sluicing clause (i.e. wh-sLUicE) manifests its expected grammatical properties on the one hand, and receives its semantic interpretation on the other hand. in this paper, i investigate Emirati Arabic (EA) sluicing and conclude that EA sluicing should be analyzed as Tp-deletion from an underlying wh-construction, at the level of pf. This supports the pf-deletion approach (Ross 1969, Merchant 2001) and argues against the Lf-copying approach (chung, Ladusaw and Mccloskey 1995, 2006, chung 2005) to sluicing. Moreover, i demonstrate that the EA sluicing source is predetermined by the type of wh-construction in EA. EA allows two types of wh-constructions, namely wh-fronting and wh-clefts. Both wh-strategies, while morphosyntactically distinct, are fully attested in the formation of sluicing. This paper also claims that the typology of wh-constructions has a direct impact on the typology of sluicing.
... In sentences with VSO order, verb raising to T leaves the subject in situ, inside VP (Aoun et al., 2010;Benmamoun, 2000;Fassi Fehri, 1993;Mohammad, 2000;Ouhalla, 2013;Thompson & Werfelli, 2012). This is illustrated in (3). ...
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In Lebanese Arabic, lexical subjects may occur before or after verbs, but only before non-verbal predicates. Analysis of spontaneous language samples from 19 two-year-old children shows that postverbal (VS) and preverbal (SV) subjects emerge simultaneously. The youngest children displayed no VS-SV difference in frequency. A slight preference for SV is observed in older children. No preference for SV subjects was found in the speech of the mothers of the younger or older children. Lexical subjects systematically appeared before non-verbal predicates. We interpret these results as evidence for early knowledge of syntactic movement, consistent with Wexler’s (1998) Very Early Parameter Setting.
... In spirit of Landau [2], MSA does not treat cases of the verb promise as exceptions. It contains a wide range of promise-type verbs which predict subject control even in the presence of an intervening argument [17]. Some of these verbs are such as talab-a "he requested", sa?al-a "he asked", taɛahad-a "he vowed", haddad-a "he threatened", eqtaraħ-a "he suggested", and ɛarađ-a "he proposed". ...
... Although this flexibility in clause word order is usually encountered at its highest levels in old classical Arabic, more particularly in literary writing and poetry, it can also be found to a lesser extent in SA which is used in the mainstream media and other official institutions. However, VSO word order is considered to be the basic, most frequent and unmarked one in SA (Abdul-Raof, 1998; Fassi Fehri, 1993; Mohammad, 2000;Ouhalla, 1994) Unlike English where the use of SVO is the unmarked word order, the SA norm is VSO. It is true that SVO structure is also used but not with the same frequency as VSO structures. ...
Article
The objective of the present paper is to give a detailed presentation of how the thematic structure is expressed in Standard Arabic (SA) and how different it is from that of English language. SA is a language which displays different linguistic properties in comparison to English, the language around which the Systemic Functional Grammar theory (SFG) was first developed (Halliday, 1994). Very few studies have been carried out to study the thematic structure of SA and none of them deals with all types of sentence structures in this language. Abdul-Raof's study is a case in point (Abdul-Raof, 1998); he is mainly concerned with studying the thematic structure of nominal clauses i.e. clauses starting with nouns, despite the fact that Arabic is a language where VSO structures are frequently used. It is precisely at the level of VSO structures that the analysis of thematic structure in Arabic becomes problematic. Contrary to what previous studies in this area of enquiry say, I will mainly argue that the verb cannot be considered Theme in SA. It is also worth noting that the present work is part of a general endeavour to develop a Systemic Functional Grammar of SA.
... For syntactic analyses of the CS and (in)definite inheritance in Arabic, see e.g. FassiFehri (1993Fehri ( , 1999,Mohammad (2000),Bardeas (2008); for Hebrew, seeRitter (1991),Borer (1999),Siloni (2001),Sichel (2002),Shlonsky (2004), andDanon (2008), among others.Hiddien trilogies of universal quantifiers 3 © 2020 The Editorial Board of Studia Linguistica ...
Article
Distinct senses of universal quantification are expressed not only by vocabulary inventory variation, but also through features and categories which build the various quantifier types. It can be shown that the most productive Arabic universal kull (and arguably its kins in Semitic and other languages) conveys three universal quantifier senses, roughly equivalent to English all, every, and each (and not only just two, as commonly assumed). Similar trilogies are observed in Greek, French, or Hebrew (with two Q words, or just one). Thanks to their feature and category specifications, universal subtypes are more appropriately characterized in terms of Merge and Move syntactic operations, as in Chomsky (1995), Beghelli and Stowell (1997), and they conform to internal composition of variational quantifier meaning (as in e.g. Szabolcsi 2010, Mathewson 2013), and appealing results about distributivity (Tunstall 1998 & Champollion 2017, among others).
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تُعنى هذه الدراسة بمراجعة بعض الآراء الموجودة في التراث اللغوي العربي بخصوص بعض التراكيب النحوية في اللغة العربية. وتشتمل المراجعة على طرح الآراء الموجودة ونقدها ومن ثَم تقديم آراء جديدة مبنية على أساس إطار نظري حديث ومستندة إلى العديد من الأدلة والشواهد والقرائن، في ضوء ما تم التوصل إليه من نتائج في هذا المجال، بهدف تضمين الآراء الجديدة في المناهج الدراسية. وستتم مراجعة تراكيب لغوية مختلفة، مثل الجملة الاسمية (والحالات الإعرابية الخاصة بركنيها)، وعمل "إنَّ" وأخواتها وعمل "كانَ" وأخواتها وعمل "ظنَ" وأخواتها وكذلك طبيعة اسم الفاعل وعمله.
... Such construction is not the focus of the present study, and therefore will not be discussed in any details here other than noting that research on Arabic syntax (cf. Fassi Fehri, 1993;Mohammad, 2000) has treated object pronominal clitics as arguments. 1 Creswell (2007) identified four kinds of research as qualitative, namely discourse analysis, critical discourse analysis, political discourse analysis, narratology and phenomenology. ...
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The aim of this paper is to provide a minimalist account of object displacement in terms of its trigger and its landing site in the syntactic tree structure of Standard Arabic (SA) clauses. The account utilizes Chomsky's concept of edge feature (EF) within the Minimalist Program and Rizzi's Split-CP analysis. In terms of its data scope, the paper is limited to a class of data identified as displaying the Verb – Object – Subject (VOS) order wherein the object is a full DP (not a pronominal clitic), and appears in a position preceding the subject. It will be argued that this order is the result of focus displacement of the object from its canonical position inside VP across the subject DP to the outer periphery of vP. The result of this operation is a marked order VOS driven by the vP edge feature (EF) to achieve the pragmatic function of focus.
... Note 10. Fassi-Fehri (1993) and Mohammad (2000) point out that in MSA the pronoun of separation, which is a PE in this paper, agrees with the first DP in gender and number but not in person. ...
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In Arabic, a pronominal element (PE) (Note 1) appears in almost all copular clause types, specifically the specificational, identificational, and identity clauses, as well as in clauses with a post-copular definite description. It is obligatory in an identity clause consisting of proper nouns and is otherwise optional. However, the PE cannot be used in Arabic predicational clauses. This paper examines the nature of this PE, why it is illicit in the predicational clause and licit in all other types, and why it is obligatory only in the identity clause consisting of proper nouns and is otherwise optional. It suggests that the PE is a realization of the F head (the identity predicate) in the structure of the identity clause. The illicit use of the PE in the predicational clause follows from the presence of predicative expressions in this type of clause. Lastly, it is shown that the PE is obligatory only in an identity clause involving proper nouns to avoid ambiguity, and is otherwise optional.
... An additional important point that bears mentioning here is that MSA maintains overt case markers on nominal entities, something that is argued to be the main reason for the multiplicity of word orders used in this language (Mohammad 2000). In addition to SVO and VSO word orders, other (marked) word orders can be used, provided that certain conditions on information structure of the given sentence are met (Moutaouakil 1989;Jarrah 2019b). ...
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This paper provides a typological comparison of subject-verb agreement in three languages (i.e. Arabic, Spanish and English) that belong to different language families. We essentially show that although these three languages share several important properties of subject-verb agreement (e.g., agreement is realized as suffixes), they diverge with respect to many other aspects. For instance, in Arabic, the word order and the type of the subject (i.e., a pronoun vs. a full DP) affect subject-verb agreement. On the other hand, subject-verb agreement in Spanish and English is insensitive to either condition. However, unlike the case in English, the verb in Spanish displays rich agreement with its subject. The paper concludes that although subject-verb agreement might be a universal phenomenon, the determinants of its morphosyntactic realization are definitely language-specific.
... However, note that this prediction is contingent upon the assumption that Zayd is base-generated in the specifier of the VP (seeMohammed, 2000). ...
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This paper addresses two issues that characterize the (morpho)-syntax of sentential negation in Standard Arabic (SA) and modern Arabic varieties. The first one is parametric and addresses the location of negation in the clause structure. The second issue concerns the agreement markers realized on the negative particle laysa along with the temporal interpretation that some of the negative markers in SA encode, namely lan and lam. Two views have been contrasted in the literature: the Low-Neg analysis, according to which Neg is the complement of TP, and the High-Neg analysis whereby Neg is higher than T. In this study, I will argue that while the two views account form a good range of empirical facts, Low-Neg analysis lacks empirical adequacy. Similarly, the High-Neg view is hard to reconcile within the Spec-head agreement and the standard Agree approach. However, I will show that the High-Neg analysis can be still maintained under the Feature-Inheritance approach, in which T inherits its ø-features and Tense feature from C.
... The initial DP is functionally a topic, and the construction is known in SA Grammar as Topic-Comment (Plunkett 1993;Fassi Fehri 1993). vi Several researchers (Mohammad, 2000;Ouhalla, 1994 andSoltan, 2007), essentially dealing with SVO type sentences, have proposed a default Nominative Case for preverbal DPs. To account for the Case properties of predicate copular clauses with no overt verb, the standard Agree operation, rather than default Case, will be adopted. ...
... In view of the unavailability of any previously proposed account for this phenomenon in Standard Arabic, I propose two competing accounts which still need further investigation and evidence. The first account builds on the assumption that preverbal subjects in Standard Arabic are Topics (Mohammad, 2000): ...
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This paper examines the unexpected verbal anti-agreement with non-human plural subjects in Standard Arabic. In this language, when the plural subject denotes non-humans, the verb fails to establish plural agreement with that subject. Non-human DPs refer to nominals which denote any animate life-form other than humans as well as all inanimate entities. In this paper, I provide two competing analyses to account for this phenomenon. In the first analysis, I build on the assumption (Mohammad, 2000) that preverbal subjects in this language are Topics and argue that the singular number marker on the anti-agreeing verb is the result of establishing partial agreement with the non-human subject in its base-position before movement/dislocation to TopP. In the second account, I borrow Corbett’s (2004) notion of ‘individuated nominals’ where it is assumed that plural nominals can either refer to collective individuals or distinct individuals; subsequently the intended referent dictates agreement on the verb. Hence, I argue that non-human plural subjects are collective nominals that are not individuated, therefore they are inherently singular and the plural marker in this case carries morphosyntactic information that does not affect the inherently imposed singular feature.
... The second example shows a form of the negative laysa, i.e., las-na, inflecting for the grammatical categories of number (plural) and gender (feminine) because it comes after the subject. Investigating the syntactic properties of subject-verb agreement, their placement and how agreement is affected by the subject position will take us far afield; the reader is advised to see the work of other linguists (including Abdelhafiz, 2005;Ahmad-Sokarno, 2005;Aoun & Benmamoun, 1999;Bahloul & Harbert, 1992;Carroll, 2000;Harbert & Bahloul, 2002;Mohammad, 1990Mohammad, , 2000. The next section shows the alternative negative form in HA that negates the structures the CA and MSA negative laysa negates. ...
... Second, Soltan (2007) and Alotaibi (2015) argue that preverbal subjects are taken to be genuine topics that are associated with a null resumptive pronoun, pro, in the clause (see also MOHAMMAD, 2000;FASSI FEHRI, 1993;AOUN et al., 2010). This approach also assumes that NPs that appear in structural positions where there is no Case assigner they are assigned nominative Case by a default mechanism. ...
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A Standard Arabic (SA) complementizer known as 'inna poses a restriction on word order in the clause it introduces and induces accusative Case-marking on the otherwise nominative preverbal NPs. Following Chomsky’s (2001) account of the morphosyntax of Case, this paper argues that 'inna is a Case assigner and thus it carries an uninterpretable Case feature that determines the value which it assigns to an unvalued Case feature concerning accessible goal within A-bar projection. The paper shows that this argument captures the restriction imposed on 'inna-clauses. Keywords: Arabic; complementizer; Case marking; word order; minimalism. Resumo: Um complementizador no árabe padrão, conhecido como 'inna, impõe uma restrição na ordem das palavras da oração por ele introduzida e induz marcação de Caso acusativo nos SNs preverbais que em outras circunstâncias têm marcação de Caso nominativo. Seguindo o modelo de Chomsky (2001) para a morfossintaxe de Caso, este artigo argumenta que 'inna é um designador de Caso e que ele carrega um traço de Caso não interpretável que determina o valor que o mesmo designa para um traço de Caso até então não marcado de uma meta acessível na projeção de A-barra. O artigo mostra que esse argumento captura as cláusulas 'inna impostas pela restrição. Palavras-chave: Árabe; complementizador; marcação de Caso; ordem de palavras; minimalismo.
... Assuming the validity of this argument, little d in vocative phrases is a transitive probe with the capacity to assign accusative Case to D. The second point is that the vocative noun comes into the derivation with a default Case feature. According to a number of researchers (e.g., Al-Balushi, 2011;Fassi Fehri, 1993;Mohammad, 2000;Soltan, 2007), nominative Case is the default Case in Arabic. Nominative Case is not only the default Case but also the least marked. ...
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This paper examines the syntactic structure of Arabic vocatives, focusing on Case-marking of vocatives. The assignment of accusative and nominative Case can be accounted for in the light of Hill (2017) and Larson (2014)'s proposals. Hill (2017) provides the basic structure of the vocative phrase, and Larson (2014) proposes the internal structure of DP. The combination of these proposals explains the derivation of Arabic vocatives and their Case alternation. This paper argues that indefinite vocatives are assigned accusative Case only if they are merged with an overt D-n, otherwise a nominative Case surfaces on the noun by default. Proper names have the same analysis since the presence of the indefinite article-n is a prerequisite for accusative Case assignment. Concerning vocatives as heads of Construct States, N-to-D movement takes place in order to assign [+def] feature to D and is assigned accusative Case once D raises to the light d. Regarding vocatives in demonstrative phrases, D-to-d movement is blocked because of the intervening constituent Dem, indicating that this operation is subject to the adjacency condition. The same analysis is applicable to definite vocatives occurring with the particle ʡayyuha.
... Second, Soltan (2007) and Alotaibi (2015) argue that preverbal subjects are taken to be genuine topics that are associated with a null resumptive pronoun, pro, in the clause (see also Mohammad, 2000;Fassi Fehri, 1993;Aoun et al., 2010). This approach assumes that post-verbal subjects occur in A-position and receive Structural nominative Case; they get their Case via Agree relation with T. While topics occur in A'-position and appear in the nominative Case by default mechanism in the absence of any overt Case assigner such as an overt C of the ʔinna-type. ...
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A Standard Arabic (SA) complementizer known as ʔinna poses a restriction on word orders in the clause it introduces and induces accusative Case-marking on the otherwise nominative preverbal NPs (Note1). Following Chomsky’s (2001) account of the morphosyntax of Case, this paper argues that ʔinna is a Case assigner and thus it carries an uninterpretable Case feature that determines the value which it assigns to an unvalued Case feature concerning accessible goal within A-bar projection. The paper shows that this argument captures the asymmetrical word order between clauses introduced by ʔinna and those headed by null CPs.
... With the assumption that complements of factive verbs are, in updated terminology, DPs with a silent noun and determiner (Schueler, 2016), 17 the two facts of factive complements are straightforwardly accounted for. It has been argued elsewhere that DPs are absolute islands in Arabic grammar (Mohammad, 1989(Mohammad, , 1999(Mohammad, , 2000Soltan, 2007;Musabhien, 2009). Given this, the observation that no extraction whatsoever is allowed from factive complements which are embedded under DP follows. ...
Article
This paper investigates subject extraction from embedded clauses in Jordanian Arabic (JA). Firstly, it shows that JA maintains the division between factive vs. non-factive verbs with respect to (subject) extraction. We argue that non-factive clausal complements are not islands for extraction, and, hence, their subject can undergo movement to the left periphery of the main clause. We use Starke’s (2001) proposal of Relativized Minimality to account for the ensuing restriction that bans the object and/or locative adjuncts of the factive clausal complement to appear pre-verbally (while the subject is extracted). We propose that this restriction is due to the richly-featured content of the subject wh-word that acts as a barrier against the movement of elements that fall within its c-command domain. As for factive clausal complements (i.e., embedded under factive verbs), we prove that such complements are strong islands for extraction. We follow Kiparsky & Kiparsky (1970) and related works, that factive complements are, with updated terminology, DPs which are absolute islands in Arabic. With this being the case, this paper challenges several recent approaches to factive complements that have argued either for a reduced left periphery for factive complements (e.g., Haegeman 2006 and de Cuba 2007) or for the presence of an operator that has the effect to block movement out of these clauses (e.g., Zubizaretta 2001 and Haegeman 2012).
... The initial DP is functionally a topic, and the construction is known in SA Grammar as Topic-Comment (Plunkett 1993;Fassi Fehri 1993). vi Several researchers (Mohammad, 2000;Ouhalla, 1994 andSoltan, 2007), essentially dealing with SVO type sentences, have proposed a default Nominative Case for preverbal DPs. To account for the Case properties of predicate copular clauses with no overt verb, the standard Agree operation, rather than default Case, will be adopted. ...
... The syntactic structure of VSO and SVO Arabic clauses with their subject-verb agreement asymmetries has been thoroughly discussed in the literature(Fassi Fehri 1993;Mohammad 2000; Aoun et al. 2010;Alotaibi & Borsley 2013; Wurmbrand & Haddad 2016, among others). ...
Article
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Modern Standard Arabic (MSA) has several embedded clause constructions, some of which resemble control in English (and other languages). However, these constructions exhibit some notable differences. Chief among them is the fact that the embedded verb carries agreement features that can indicate both coreference and disjoint reference between a matrix argument and the subject of the complement clause. Through a corpus-based investigation, informed by previous insights regarding the distinction between control and no control, we found no evidence of obligatory control predicates in MSA; these findings contradict accepted generalizations (and predictions) proposed by state-of-the-art theories of control. Nevertheless, although no obligatory control predicates were found, the backward pattern, where the single expressed subject occurs in the embedded clause, revealed morphosyntactic reflexes of the control vs. no control distinction. Coreference between the expressed embedded subject and the unexpressed matrix subject was found to be restricted to a set of predicates. The existence of backward control and its relation to the backward raising construction, also found in MSA, are especially relevant for current debates regarding the theory of control. We propose an analysis that ties together control, raising and restructuring.
... In the literature, during the government and binding theory (GB) and the minimalist program (MP) eras, several analyses have been proposed to explain the agreement issue in MSA. There are grammarians who analyze the preverbal subject as a subject among those, Mohammad (1990Mohammad ( , 2000, Aoun, Benmamoun and Sportiche (1994), Bolotin (1995) and Benmamoun (2000) among others; others like Ouhalla (1991, 1994, 1997), Fassi Fehri (1988 and Alexiadou and Anagnostopoulou (1998)among others, take the preverbal subject as a topic or a focus. ...
... In the literature, during the Government and Binding Theory (GB) and the Minimalist Program (MP) eras, several analyses have been proposed to explain the agreement issue in MSA.There are grammarians who analyze the preverbal subject as a subject among those, Mohammad (1990Mohammad ( , 2000, Aoun, Benmamoun and Sportiche (1994), Bolotin (1995) and Benmamoun (2000) among others; others like Ouhalla (1991, 1994, 1997), FassiFehri (1988 and Alexiadou and Anagnostopoulou (1998)among others, take the preverbal subject as a topic or a focus. ...
... On the one hand, the preverbal DP is considered to be a subject by some modern linguists because it is assumed to move from [Spec-vP] to [Spec-TP] which is a position for subjects (Mohammad, 1990(Mohammad, 2000Demirdache, 1991;Bahloul and Harbert, 1992;Fassi Fehri, 1993;Aoun et al., 1994;Bolotin, 1995;and Benmamoun and Lorimor, 2006, among many others). Moreover, the preverbal DP is viewed as a topic by other linguists because it is assumed to be located in the preverbal position and is associated with a resumptive pronoun within the clause (Plunkett, 1993;Akkal, 1996;Ouhalla, 1997;and Musabhein, 2008). ...
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This study aims to examine structural (nominative and accusative) Case assignment in Najrani Arabic (henceforth, NA) and in turn provide a satisfactorily unified account on how structural Case is assigned in Najrani Arabic within Chomsky's (2001, 2005) Agree theory. It attempts to present a straightforward answer to the following questions: (i) how is structural (nominative and accusative) Case assigned in NA, given the recent developments and challenges in Chomsky’s (2001, 2005) Agree theory?, and (ii) how are Case and agreement features valued in NA syntax? A closer examination of structural Case in NA demonstrates that, unlike Standard Arabic, NA has an abstract Case system which is not morphologically realized, a similar phenomenon to that of English. Furthermore, the study examines structural Case assignment in VSO and SVO structures and points out that structural Case in NA is assigned via an Agree relation between a probe and a goal within a c-command domain. That is, in VSO structures in NA, nominative Case is assigned by the C-T complex via an Agree relation established between T and the subject in [Spec-TP] while accusative Case is a reflex of an Agree relation between the light v and the object DP. Besides, preverbal DPs in SVO structures undergoes movement from [Spec-vP] to [Spec-topP] and leaves a resumptive pro(nominal in [Spec-vp] which appears as either an overt number marker cliticized onto the verb or as a covert pro(nominal). However, in SVO structures introduced by the complementiser inn, there are two DPs; a post-verbal DP and a preverbal one. The post-verbal DP is assigned nominative Case by the C-T complex while the preverbal DP is assigned accusative lexical Case in the presence of the over Case assigner inn or default nominative Case in the absence of inn. © 2016, Australian International Academic Centre PTY LTD. All rights reserved.
... Different word orders result in different agreement patterns. Pre-verbal and unpronounced subjects trigger full agreement [FA] on the verb, while post-verbal subjects trigger partial agreement [PA] (only gender; default singular), as (1) and (2) illustrate (Mohammad, 1990(Mohammad, , 2000Aoun et al., 1994;Ouhalla, 1994;Benmamoun, 2000;Soltan, 2007). generally, the SUBJECT»V order triggers FA, whereas the V»SUBJECT order triggers PA. ...
Chapter
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Standard Arabic licenses raising structures with three types of verbs known collectively as verbs of appropinquation. Raising structures with these verbs are unique in that they permit different subject positions and an agreement pattern that is not found otherwise in the language. Matching the different word orders to positions that have been proposed for raising constructions in languages like English, we show that a striking similarity holds and that raising in Standard Arabic provides new support for the existence of opacity domains (phases) in raising contexts. The chapter analyzes these raising configurations, along with the different word orders and agreement patterns they allow, by proposing a cyclic spell-out approach in which a particular PF choice at an early cycle (phase) creates certain opacity effects for the agreement options at later cycles.
... (If we assume, following Benmamoun 1992Benmamoun , 1997 Fassi-Fehri 1993; Mohammad 2000; Shlonsky 1997, and Oualla 1994 that the base-generated order within the VP in Palestinian Arabic is SVO, then the derivation of VSO sentences involves only verb movement, while the derivation of SVO sentences involves both verb movement and NP movement. Specifically, in order to derive VSO, the head V raises to 1° (a functional head, probably T°). ...
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This study explores the acquisition of Subject-Verb-Object (SVO) and Verb-Subject-Object (VSO) structures in Palestinian Colloquial Arabic (PGA) using a repetition task to examine the production of these structures in a group of fifteen typically developing children aged 1:7-3:0. The findings indicate that the VSO order is mastered early, and is preferred over SVO by the young age groups. SVO order, on the other hand, appears late, even though it is the more frequent order in the adult target language. These findings are explained within the framework of head and phrase movement acquisition. Children acquire verb movement before they acquire NP movement, and therefore succeed better with VSO sentences that involve only verb movement, than with SVO sentences that involve NP movement as well. With age, having mastered both types of movement, children shift to predominantly use the more grammatically complex SVO structure, which is the preferred and more abundant structure in the dialect.
... In addition, if one accepts that Arabic is an SVO language, which could be a possibility, one has to account for the different agreement on the verb: full agreement (gender, person, and number) with the subject when the verb follows the subject and partial agreement (only gender and person) with the subject when the verb precedes it (e.g. Mohammad 2000). If the verb cannot raise and remains in situ, how do we expect it to receive its agreement? ...
... -Haddad, 2003;Saiegh-Haddad, Levin, & Hende, in press .( Benmamoun, 1997;Fassi Fehri, 1993;Mohammad, 2000;Shlonsky, 1997 .( * # F \$ B B+ C /" ' svo vso . ...
... Following the same argument, Mohammad (1990 Mohammad ( , 2000) attempts to provide an explanation for the problem of asymmetrical agreement in (SA) by proposing what he calls 'Null Expletive analysis'. The partial agreement in VS order can be justified by the relationship that exists between the node I and the null expletive that exists in its Specifier. ...
Article
The present study investigates the features of the verb agreement in Standard Arabic (SA).The investigation is conducted within the framework of the principles of Chomsky's Minimalism. The main objective of the study is to survey the applicability of the Minimalist principles on the derivation of SV order and VO order in SA. The study shows that the principles of Minimalism cannot account for the feature of agreement asymmetry either in SV order or VS order. The study concludes that principles of Minimalism needs to be modified to justify the asymmetry in agreement features of the verb in both SV and VS orders in SA.
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Thesis
Cette thèse a pour objectif l’étude des formes négatives en arabe standard. Une attention particulière est portée aux formes qui recourent aux morphèmes /laː/ et /ɣajr/. L’usage de /laː/ et /ɣajr/ en lieu et place de /lajsa/ soulève des questions sur l’exacte nature de ces deux morphèmes et les raisons pour lesquelles seuls eux deux peuvent être mis en œuvre dans la négation morphologique. Il serait intéressant de comprendre dans quelle mesure la négation de l’adjectif et du nom par /la:/ et /ɣajr/ est différente de celle faite par /lajsa/ et par tout autre morphème négatif. De même, il conviendrait de définir les propriétés morpho-syntaxiques et sémantiques permettant à l’un et l’autre morphème de non seulement nier un constituant spécifique dans la phrase (un adjectif ou un nom) mais surtout d’interagir avec l’adjectif nié et avec le nom modifié en termes de traits de cas, de définitude, de genre et de nombre. Les propriétés morphosyntaxiques et sémantiques de ces deux morphèmes ainsi que leur portée de négation seront étudiées en lien étroit avec leurs contextes d’apparition et leur comportement vis-à-vis de certaines catégories grammaticales comme le cas et la définitude. Pour ce faire, nous nous intéressons aux différents registres de la langue arabe, surtout, à l’arabe standard, langue de notre corpus, à sa répartition géographie et à ses différentes utilisations dans les médias et les journaux. Nous étudions, ensuite, les éléments morphosyntaxiques de la phrase en arabe, en allant de la syntaxe de la phrase à la morphologie du mot. Puis, nous analysons les deux types de négation en arabe standard : la négation syntaxique et la négation morphologique. Nous abordons la distribution syntaxique et morphologique des marqueurs négatifs (/laː/, /lam/, /lan/, lajsa/ et /maː/), ainsi que les propriétés morphosyntaxiques et distributionnelles des marqueurs négatifs en usage dans la négation morphologique /laː/ et /ɣajr/. Ensuite, nous examinons les constructions qui contiennent les deux marqueurs négatifs /laː/ et /ɣajr/ et analysons leurs comportements selon les différents contextes dans le but d’expliciter leurs propriétés morphosyntaxiques et sémantiques. Nous examinons, également, la différence en termes de structure morphosyntaxique entre des constructions incluant /laː/ et /ɣajr/ pour former une négation dite morphologique et celles d’autres marqueurs négatifs qui représentent la négation syntaxique selon l’approche nanosyntaxique. Enfin, nous soulignons les points communs et les différences qui caractérisent les deux marqueurs négatifs /laː/ et /ɣajr/ en termes de portée et de constructions syntaxiques.
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Contra Chomsky (2007, 2008), this paper argues that there is no Φ-dependency between C0 and T0 in Jordanian Arabic (JA) grammar. C0 and T0 are independently endowed with uΦ-content, something that turns them into active probes, which are shown not to agree necessarily with the same goal. This provides evidence for a proposal where T0 and C0 have distinct uΦ-features (Haegeman & van Koppen 2012). The study also shows that C0 in JA, unlike T0 , may agree with a goal whose structural Case is already valued. We account for this variation following Oxford's (2017) microparametric proposal where the Activity Condition is a property of a particular functional head, rather than a property of the language as a whole. With respect to T0 ’s Φ-endowment, this study proposes that such endowment is resulted from a consequence of setting the positive value of the postulated T0 -Φ Parameter which distinguishes languages where T0 is endowed with Φ-features from those where it is not. This accounts for the observation that T0 is always inflected for Φ-agreement in JA, even in situations where C0 is not projected.
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Arabic varieties show explicit linguistic behavior, especially at the syntactic level. This apparent diversity is mainly due to how syntactic rules confine the scope and the flexibility of movement of certain constituents inside and outside their syntactic domains. This paper examines solely how the mother tongue from which all these varieties have emanated, i.e. Standard Arabic can be obviously analyzed as a configurational language that tends to surface in a way similar to nonconfigurational languages at certain surface levels where determinative phrases 'DPs' lend themselves freely to move and result in various templates frequently realized as VSO, OVS, OSV and VOS. These configurational structures seem problematic to construe in many vernacular Arabic varieties, mainly, in Suburbanite Northern Jordanian Arabic because of the scarcity of effective inflectional morphology such varieties exploit rather than pragmatic factors.
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