Explaining variability in negative concord: A sociosyntactic analysis

Adger, D. and Smith, J. (2020) Explaining variability in negative concord: A sociosyntactic analysis. In: Beaman, K. V., Buchstaller, I., Fox, S. and Walker, J. A. (eds.) Advancing Socio-grammatical Variation and Change: In Honour of Jenny Cheshire. Routledge. ISBN 9780429282720 (doi: 10.4324/9780429282720-15)

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Cheshire’s (1982) seminal study of Reading adolescents revealed robust use of negative concord, a ubiquitous ‘vernacular universal’ of English varieties worldwide. In this chapter we analyse one aspect of the grammar of negative concord in a variety spoken in Scotland: variability in the expression of a sentential negation marker in the presence of a negative noun phrase. We develop a syntactic analysis that accounts for the quantitative patterns in our corpus, which further extends to concrete, and correct, predictions about unobserved forms. Our analysis also has implications for understanding why negative concord is a vernacular universal and accounting for differences in individual speakers’ grammars and their use.

Item Type:Book Sections
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Smith, Professor Jennifer
Authors: Adger, D., and Smith, J.
College/School:College of Arts & Humanities > School of Critical Studies > English Language and Linguistics
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2020
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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