Gapping-zeagma in French and English: a non-deletion analysis
- J. Rooryck
- Linguistic Analysis, vol. 15, 2-3.
The research method applied by the authors, and outlined in introductory remarks, is determined by the assumptions of the Pronominal Approach, which has been conceived by K. van den Eynde and developed in collaboration with Cl. Blanche-Benveniste. In this linguistic theory it is argued that syntatic structures in which a verbal nucleus is completed with merely pronominal elements function as classifiers for basic syntactic structures as such. More specifically, feature values that can be directly obtained from the observation of constructions of the first type (i. e. pronominal constructions) are said to characterize fully the syntactic properties of the second type of constructions whose lexical complexity often resists direct access to their syntactic features. In the first and second parts of the article, the authors set out to give evidence for the syntactic phenomena that control coordination byet (‘and’) andmais (‘but’), via the investigation of pronominal constructions. To that end, they introduce a system of feature categories and corresponding feature values, in terms of which ascertainments based on the observation of pronominal constructions can be formalized so as to make implementation possible. The resulting feature system, together with the rules governing the combination of feature values, is shown to reflect most accurately the complexities of the problem under consideration. The final part of the article considers more generally the implications, possibilities and advantages of the approach for the computational treatment of syntactic units with lexical items in Natural Language Processing.