Bound and Referential Pronouns

  • Joseph Aoun
  • Norbert Hornstein
Part of the Studies in Linguistics and Philosophy book series (SLAP, volume 40)


In this paper, we investigate the behavior of bound pronouns (i.e. pronouns linked to quantificational noun phrases) in English, Chinese and Japanese. It is commonly assumed that these elements obey two distinct requirements. The first requires these pronouns to be in the scope of the quantificational NP they are coindexed with. The second states that these pronouns obey the same anti-locality condition as the one applying to referential pronouns: they must be A-free in the same environment as referential pronouns. That is, they obey principle B of the Binding Theory (see Chomsky 1981). In this paper, we will argue for two conclusions. First, whether referential or bound, pronouns obey two distinct anti-locality requirements rather than one. They must be A-free as well as A’-free in some local environments. Second, across languages, the environment in which a pronoun has to be A’-free need not be identical to the environment in which it has to be A-free; thus, corroborating the conclusion of Manzini and Wexler (1987) according to which the definition of locality is subject to variation.


Local Environment Noun Phrase Linguistic Inquiry Embed Clause Matrix Clause 
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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joseph Aoun
  • Norbert Hornstein

There are no affiliations available

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