Susi Wurmbrand (University of Vienna, Harvard University)

Synthesis in complementation

Languages exhibit a variety of different types of complementation, which can be divided into different classes based on their semantic properties and/or their morphosyntactic properties. An important observation that has been made in many works on complementation is that there is a dependency between the meaning of a complementation configuration and the morphosyntactic coding-changing one often also results in a change of the other. Despite significant cross-linguistic variation in complementation and the lack of simple surface universals, typological works have brought out implicational relations, which are an important tool for understanding variation. Specifically, complementation configurations can be ranked according to their semantic properties, forming an implicational complementation hierarchy, along which syntactic or morphological distinctions, if present in a language, operate. To derive the hierarchy and its implicational nature, I will suggest a synthesis model of complementation where the complement clause and matrix predicate may affect each other and together determine the possible outcomes.