Genitive Case Assignment in Pashto Simple Possessor Determiner Phrases
Keywords:Genitive Case; determiner phrase; case assignment; possessor; features.
Over the years, different mechanisms have been proposed to explain the assignment/ checking of genitive Case in determiner phrases (DPs), on cross-linguistic basis. However, none of the mechanisms so far suggested, for the assignment of genitive Case, can adequately explain the assignment of genitive Case in Pashto simple possessor DPs. The goal of this paper is to propose a mechanism for the assignment of genitive Case in Pashto simple possessor DPs. For this purpose, Chomsky's framework of 'The Minimalist Program', with its techniques of Merge, Move, Agree, Features, Goal, Probe, and Value, is adopted. While the mechanisms proposed by Adger and Watanabe are unable to explain Pashto simple possessor DPs, the mechanism proposed in this study, under the umbrella of the minimalist program, is applied to different kinds of Pashto simple possessor DPs, and is able to adequately explain the assignment of genitive Case in them. The overall conclusion for this paper is that agreement in terms of [N] feature between the functional head D and a possessor results in assigning genitive Case to the possessor inside the DP; thus, it is a continuation of the standard theory that agreement in terms of features between a functional head and a nominal results in checking/ assigning structural Case to that nominal.
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