A-bar movement

From Glottopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

In generative syntax, A-bar movement (or A ′-movement) is movement to an A-bar position (e.g. wh-movement). As is well known, unbounded dependencies are a characteristic property of A ′-movement (Huang et al., 2009). Constructions that have been shown to be derived by A ′-movement are typically labeled as “wh-movement” structures because they are well represented by wh-interrogative constructions in English. A-movement is generally limited within the minimal domain containing a subject, whereas A ′ -movement allows long-distance operations.


The term was first used in the late 1980s.


The following are characteristics of A ′-movement:
a. A gap exists and has an A ′-antecedent.
b. The antecedent–gap relation can cross multiple clause boundaries – unbounded dependency.
c. The dependency relation is sensitive to locality conditions such as Subjacency and the Condition on Extraction Domain.


Utrecht Lexicon of Linguistics


Huang, C. T. J., Li, Y. H. A., & Li, Y. (2009). The syntax of Chinese (Vol. 10). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.