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Being progressive is just a phase: celebrating the uniqueness of progressive aspect under a phase-based analysis

William Harwood (UGent)
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Abstract
The identity of phasal boundaries has mostly been considered in light of minimal CP-TP-vP- VP structures. The question this paper addresses is where the clause internal phase boundary lies in light of more complex structures in which aspectual projections intervene between TP and vP. I claim progressive aspect to be unique amongst aspectual forms in English in that it is part of the clause internal phase, whilst perfect aspect and all higher functional items are contained within the CP/TP phase. This claim accounts for many peculiar quirks of progressive aspect in English, namely in VP ellipsis, fronting phenomena, idioms and existential constructions. On the theoretical front I argue that this division in the aspectual hierarchy is best understood through a variable approach to phases in which the highest projection within a sub-numeration acts as the phase, irrespective of what that projection is. This denies vP of its exclusivity as the clause-internal phase, and allows the progressive layer to project the phase when present. This approach generally sits in line with the move towards a dynamic understanding of phases, as per Bobaljik & Wurmbrand (2005), Wurmbrand (2012, to appear) and Bošković (to appear a, b).
Keywords
QUANTIFIERS, VP, ELLIPSIS, CONSTITUENT STRUCTURE, Syntax, EXPLETIVES, SELECTION, MOVEMENT, ARGUMENT, ENGLISH, OBJECTS, Phase Theory, Progressive aspect, Ellipsis, Fronting, Idioms, Existential constructions

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Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

MLA
Harwood, William. “Being Progressive Is Just a Phase: Celebrating the Uniqueness of Progressive Aspect Under a Phase-based Analysis.” Ed. Marcel den Dikken. NATURAL LANGUAGE & LINGUISTIC THEORY 33.2 (2015): 523–573. Print.
APA
Harwood, W. (2015). Being progressive is just a phase: celebrating the uniqueness of progressive aspect under a phase-based analysis. (M. den Dikken, Ed.)NATURAL LANGUAGE & LINGUISTIC THEORY, 33(2), 523–573.
Chicago author-date
Harwood, William. 2015. “Being Progressive Is Just a Phase: Celebrating the Uniqueness of Progressive Aspect Under a Phase-based Analysis.” Ed. Marcel den Dikken. Natural Language & Linguistic Theory 33 (2): 523–573.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Harwood, William. 2015. “Being Progressive Is Just a Phase: Celebrating the Uniqueness of Progressive Aspect Under a Phase-based Analysis.” Ed. Marcel den Dikken. Natural Language & Linguistic Theory 33 (2): 523–573.
Vancouver
1.
Harwood W. Being progressive is just a phase: celebrating the uniqueness of progressive aspect under a phase-based analysis. den Dikken M, editor. NATURAL LANGUAGE & LINGUISTIC THEORY. 2015;33(2):523–73.
IEEE
[1]
W. Harwood, “Being progressive is just a phase: celebrating the uniqueness of progressive aspect under a phase-based analysis,” NATURAL LANGUAGE & LINGUISTIC THEORY, vol. 33, no. 2, pp. 523–573, 2015.
@article{4151956,
  abstract     = {{The identity of phasal boundaries has mostly been considered in light of minimal CP-TP-vP- VP structures. The question this paper addresses is where the clause internal phase boundary lies in light of more complex structures in which aspectual projections intervene between TP and vP. I claim progressive aspect to be unique amongst aspectual forms in English in that it is part of the clause internal phase, whilst perfect aspect and all higher functional items are contained within the CP/TP phase. This claim accounts for many peculiar quirks of progressive aspect in English, namely in VP ellipsis, fronting phenomena, idioms and existential constructions.
On the theoretical front I argue that this division in the aspectual hierarchy is best understood through a variable approach to phases in which the highest projection within a sub-numeration acts as the phase, irrespective of what that projection is. This denies vP of its exclusivity as the clause-internal phase, and allows the progressive layer to project the phase when present. This approach generally sits in line with the move towards a dynamic understanding of phases, as per Bobaljik & Wurmbrand (2005), Wurmbrand (2012, to appear) and Bošković (to appear a, b).}},
  author       = {{Harwood, William}},
  editor       = {{den Dikken, Marcel}},
  issn         = {{0167-806X}},
  journal      = {{NATURAL LANGUAGE & LINGUISTIC THEORY}},
  keywords     = {{QUANTIFIERS,VP,ELLIPSIS,CONSTITUENT STRUCTURE,Syntax,EXPLETIVES,SELECTION,MOVEMENT,ARGUMENT,ENGLISH,OBJECTS,Phase Theory,Progressive aspect,Ellipsis,Fronting,Idioms,Existential constructions}},
  language     = {{eng}},
  number       = {{2}},
  pages        = {{523--573}},
  title        = {{Being progressive is just a phase: celebrating the uniqueness of progressive aspect under a phase-based analysis}},
  url          = {{http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11049-014-9267-3}},
  volume       = {{33}},
  year         = {{2015}},
}

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