THAT’S A CURIOUS COPULAR CONSTRUCTION YOU HAVE THERE!

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Sentences like That’s a beautiful dress you’re wearing are commonly heard in colloquial English. These sentences have a surface form that resembles identificational copular sentences with relative clause modifiers (e.g., This is the house I mentioned) and cleft sentences with demonstrative subjects (e.g., That was John that I saw). Ever since Higgins’s (1973) seminal work, English copular sentences have received much attention, but sentences like That’s a beautiful dress you’re wearing have not been part of that discussion. In this squib, I show how these sentences are both similar and dissimilar to identificationals and clefts, and suggest a formal analysis that captures their characteristic properties.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)168-181
Number of pages14
JournalLinguistic Inquiry
Volume53
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 12 2022

Keywords

  • Clefts
  • Copular sentences
  • Demonstratives
  • Focus
  • Identificationals
  • Relative clauses

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'THAT’S A CURIOUS COPULAR CONSTRUCTION YOU HAVE THERE!'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this