Assertion and factivity: Towards explaining restrictions on Embedded V2 in Scandinavian

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Since Hooper & Thompson (1973), many researchers have pursued the insight that V2 is licensed by assertion. H&T categorise predicates depending on whether their complement can be asserted: e.g. communication verbs (say) permit the assertion of their complement, in contrast to factives (be happy). Simons (2007) proposes distinguishing between embedded propositions that do or do not constitute the Main Point of Utterance (MPU)—a sharpening of the notion of assertion: in question/response-sequences, the proposition answering the question is the MPU. Given this definition/diagnostic for assertion, factives can, given the appropriate discourse context, embed MPU and thus should allow embedded V2 (EV2). This paper presents two experiments testing whether factives can embed MPU and whether MPU licenses EV2 in Swedish. The results support both Simons’ contention that factives can embed MPU, while providing new evidence that MPU does not correlate with EV2.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOrder and Structure in Syntax I
Subtitle of host publicationWord Order and Syntactic Structure
EditorsLaura Bailey, Michelle Sheehan
Place of PublicationBerlin
PublisherLanguage Science Press
Number of pages26
ISBN (Electronic)9783961100262
ISBN (Print)9783961100279
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Publication series

NameOpen Generative Syntax
PublisherLanguage Science Press

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • syntax
  • verb second
  • V2
  • Swedish


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