Indexed Definiteness
Peter Jenks, Rassidatou Konate
July 2022

This paper posits a distinction between plain definite DPs and indexed definite DPs: only the latter have a syntactically represented referential index, an idxP, in [Spec, DP]. After sketching a theory of idx as a cross-categorial feature of pro-forms, the paper argues that anaphoric definites, complex demonstratives (e.g. that linguist), and pronominal definites (e.g. we linguists) have idxP specifiers in [Spec, DP]. The second part of the paper presents a case study from anaphoric definite DPs in Marka-Dafing (Mande) which provides evidence for this proposal. We examine a co-occurrence restriction between exophoric and anaphoric demonstratives in Marka-Dafing, concluding that this restriction provides additional support for a syntactically represented idxP in [Spec, DP], as well as motivating the Single Index Constraint, the idea that indexed definites can only make use of a single index to achieve reference.

Published version at Glossa:

Citation: Jenks, P. & Konate, R., (2022) “Indexed definiteness”, Glossa: a journal of general linguistics 7(1). doi:
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/006485
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: Glossa
keywords: definiteness, dp, pronouns, demonstratives, indices, unique definite, anaphoric definite, marka-dafing, semantics, syntax
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