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Slavic Languages in the Perspective of Formal Grammar

Proceedings of FDSL 10.5, Brno 2014


Edited By Markéta Ziková, Pavel Caha and Mojmír Dočekal

The volume comprises papers that were presented at the 14th European conference on «Formal Description of Slavic Languages 10.5» at Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic. The conference focuses on formal approaches to Slavic phonology, morphology, syntax and semantics. The present contributions describe interesting data patterns found in Slavic languages and analyze them from the perspective of formal grammar, including generative syntax, Distributed Morphology, formal semantics and others.
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Semantic Analysis of Czech Demonstrative Pronoun TO


Abstract In this paper I present new data from Czech copular clauses containing the demonstrative pronoun TO. I show that while TO appears as the neuter singular form of the demonstrative pronoun, it can refer to individuals of any gender or to events from the previous context. However, I also show that there are restrictions on what TO may refer to depending on its syntactic position in a copular clause and that there is a connection between the semantic types of predicates in the copular clause and the semantic type of TO. Namely, what TO refers to affects its combinability with certain predicates in a copular clause. Based on empirical observations, I argue that it is not sufficient to analyze TO as the morphological realization of an elided NP within a DP, with the resulting DP being of type e Postal, (1966), Elbourne, (2005; 2008). More precisely, I argue that the semantic type of TO is different from e and the difference arises due to a more complex internal structure of the pronoun. In order to account for the fact that TO can take a variety of antecedents that differ in their syntactic category and semantic type, I introduce a contextually salient covert restrictor, and I argue that the restrictor is one part of the semantic type of TO. The purpose of the restrictor is to account for the diversity of the antecedents while keeping the core part of the pronominal representation more or less intact for all...

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