Accusative Case-Assignment in Double Object Constructions in Standard Arabic: A Minimalist Approach

  •  Mostapha Thabit Mohamed    


The study investigates the issue of Double object constructions (DOCs) in Standard Arabic (SA). The investigation is conducted within the framework of Chomsky’s Minimalist Program (MP) (1995, 2000, 2004), and Radford's proposals of accusative – case assignment (2004, 2009) in DOCs. The study aims to provide an account for two objectives. The first objective is to show how DOCs in SA are derived within MP. The second objective is to justify how accusative case is assigned to the first and second objects of these constructions. To achieve the first objective, the study shows that the structure of DOCs in SA can be derived by the adoption of the VP shell, one of the principles of MP, as introduced by Chomsky (1995, 2000, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008). The analysis of VP in SA reflects the fact that in DOCs the main verb has the first object as its specifer and the second object as its complement. The adoption of Radford's proposals (2004, 2009) provides a solution for the second objective of the study, the accusative – case assignment in DOCs in SA. According to Radford' proposals, the first object is assigned the accusative case by the accusative light-v whereas, the second object checks its accusative case against that of the main V. The study suggests further research on the application of MP principles on other linguistic features of SA.

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