UCL Working Papers in Linguistics 14 (2002)

Ga ga constructions in Japanese



The Japanese nominative particle ga can mark a subject, a possessor of a subject, an adjunct and the object of a stative predicate.  A prevalent view is that a tensed head licenses more than one nominative phrase in multiple specifier or adjoined positions in one projection (Heycock 1993, Ura 1996, among others).  I argue, however, that such a head licenses exactly one nominative phrase and that proxy categories are created for multiple licensing (Nash & Rouveret 1997).  The distribution of ga is further regulated by an interpretational rule that treats it as a focus particle in sentence-initial position.

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