LEFT BRANCH EXTRACTION OUT OF THE DETERMINER PHRASE IN SAUDI NORTHERN REGION DIALECT OF ARABIC: A NEW PERSPECTIVE

Khalaf M.J. AlShammiry

Abstract


To my knowledge, Left Branch Extraction (LBE) out of the Determiner Phrase (DP) is not previously attested in Modern Standard Arabic ( MSA) or any of the Arabic dialects. In Saudi Northern Region dialect of Arabic (SNRDA), the wh-degree question kam “how many/much” can appear at the left periphery of the clause leaving the noun and other postnominal modifiers in the base position, in both the subject and the object positions. In this paper, I will argue for a new perspective for the syntactic phenomenon LBE in which the extracted element is a full DP, not part of a DP as previous studies assume, that moves leaving the other DP in situ. That is to say, I will argue that there are two DPs in the argument position; one of those two DPs is the numeral and the other is all that comes after the numeral including the overt noun and its postnominal modifiers. It is only the wh-item kam “how many/how much”, which moves to the left periphery of the clause. My argument is supported, besides other things, by morpho-syntactic similarities between the numeral and the noun, for example both participating in topic and focus constructions and both use of pro-clitic h- and the use of the definite article al- “the” with other pre-nominal modifier like the quantifier kil “all” and baadh “some. This paper is unique in that it provides a new perspective on LBE in a dialect of Arabic which is rarely discussed.


Keywords


LEFT BRANCH EXTRACTION, DETERMINER PHRASE, ANCHOR, APPOSITIVE, MODERN STANDARD ARABIC, NUMERAL-NOUN CONSTRUCTIONS

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References


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.24200/mjll.vol6iss2pp17-35

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