Long-distance gender agreement in mixed Italian/English ergative clauses


bilingual competence
grammatical gender
participial agreement

How to Cite

Pierantozzi, C., & Cocchi, G. (2022). Long-distance gender agreement in mixed Italian/English ergative clauses. Linguæ & - Journal of Modern Languages and Cultures, 21(1), 67–87. https://doi.org/10.14276/l.v21i1.3398


In this work on code-switching we will discuss agreement relations which take place outside DP. In particular, we will tackle mixed Italian/English sentences containing an Italian compound ergative-type verb, where typically the past participle must agree in gender with the DP-syntactic subject. Specifically, we aim to test what gender the past participle preferably takes when the subject is an English monolingual DP or a mixed DP and, crucially, if the N-gender remains active and able to enter an agreement relation with the past participle. Data are obtained through an Acceptability Judgment Task administered to some adult Italian/English bilingual speakers. The results obtained and discussed will contribute to the debate on code-switching vs. borrowing, as well as on the architecture of the bilingual competence.

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Copyright (c) 2022 Cristina Pierantozzi, Gloria Cocchi