The Structure of Finnish Relative Clause

Saara Huhmarniemi, Pauli Brattico


This article has two aims. First, it argues against (Manninen, 2003b) who claims that Finnish restrictive relative clauses are derived by Kaynean style head raising. We argue, based on evidence from binding, case assignment, polarity, quantifier scope, anaphors and extraposition that head raising is not a possible strategy for deriving Finnish restrictive relative clauses. We then argue that Finnish restrictive relative clauses are right-adjoined to the projectional spine of the hosting DP and that they are derived head-externally. A detailed grammatical mechanism for deriving relative clauses in Finnish is proposed in the minimalist framework that takes into account recent observations concerning snow- ball wh-movement and the structure of Finnish CP. We will also make several comments towards clarifying the grammatical role of the scope-discourse active left periphery and propose an extension to the recent feature inheritance model by Chomsky (2008).


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