Next Friday, we are having the last talk of the McGill Linguistics Colloquium Series of this semester! The talk will be given by Dr. Claire Halpert (University of Minnesota) on Friday, November 10th at 3:30PM at Sherbrooke 680, room 1041 (10th floor). The details of the talk are given below.
Title: What does it seem that hyperraising blocks?
Abstract: In this talk, I explore an unusual interaction between A-movement (raising out of finite clauses) and A-bar movement (long-distance wh-movement) in the Bantu language Zulu: while both types of movement are independently permitted out of complement clauses, A-bar movement is blocked in raising environments. I demonstrate that this ungrammaticality is not a result of interactions between the moving subject and the wh-phrase themselves, but instead argue that it arises as a result of the hyperraising process in Zulu (Halpert 2019). In raising out of a finite clause (hyperraising) in Zulu, finite embedded clauses are implicated in an agreement dependency that their counterparts in non-hyperraising contexts are not; the wh-facts I discuss here suggest that the result of this dependency creates the same opacity that we find in instances of clausal dislocation and object agreement in Zulu. What can we learn from this complex and unexpected opacity profile in Zulu? The simplest approach to these patterns is to treat all instances of opacity in Zulu (and perhaps more generally) as cases of intervention for specific features.