Christina Kim in Linguistics and Philosophy

Dr Christina Kim, Lecturer in the Department of English Language & Linguistics, has just published an article in the journal Linguistics and Philosophy, entitled ‘The Division of Labor in Explanations of Verb Phrase Ellipsis’, co authored with Jeffrey T Runner (University of Rochester, USA).

Linguistics and Philosophy is a quarterly journal that focuses on issues related to structure and meaning in natural language, as addressed in the semantics, philosophy of language, pragmatics and related disciplines. The journal began 1977.
The article examines the phenomenon of Verb Phrase Ellipsis (VPE), a syntactic construction where the main verb is omitted from a sentence, as in the second sentence in: ‘Christina emailed Mike. Jeff will, too.’

Ellipsis, or the omission of a word, has been a central topic in theoretical syntax and semantics for decades, in part because theories of ellipsis must explain how a sentence containing ellipsis is nevertheless interpreted as though missing elements in the sentence are still present (the above sentence is understood as Jeff will email Mike, too’). Much of the debate has centred around the nature of the relationship between the ellipsis site (‘Jeff will, too’) and the antecedent clause (‘Christina emailed Mike’), which the meaning of the ellipsis seems to depend on. The article presents an empirical study of acceptability in Verb Phrase Ellipsis, and argues for a particular division of labour between grammatical requirements and discourse constraints.

To access the full article, please see the webpage.