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Lardil “Case Stacking” and the Timing of Case Assignment

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Abstract.  Lardil (Tangkic, Australia) allows nominals to surface with multiple case affixes. One condition on this so‐called case stacking is that when new morphology is added to a nominal with a semantically uninterpretable Case (such as accusative), the Case is dropped; a nominal with a semantically interpretable Case (such as instrumental), by contrast, can stack more morphology outside the Case morpheme. I argue that uninterpretable Cases in these examples are in fact assigned and later eliminated, and develop an approach to Spell‐out that allows such derivations to take place, in which PF Spell‐out and LF Spell‐out are dissociated. I offer two arguments that processes like Case assignment and concord take place in the narrow syntax: one has to do with the distinction drawn between meaningful and meaningless Cases, and the other with the interaction between Lardil Tense concord and various types of movement operations.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Norvin Richards MIT Department of Linguistics and Philosophy 32-D868 77 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02139 USA

Publication date: March 1, 2013

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