Kotek, Hadas and Michael Yoshitaka Erlewine, 2013. “Blocking effects in English causatives.”
Manuscript, MIT.

This paper presents a previously unobserved pattern of morphological blocking in English causatives, which parallels a well-studied pattern of morphological blocking in Japanese causatives (Kuroda, 1965, a.o.). We present evidence of deep parallels between the English and Japanese causatives along with a detailed syntax/semantics for these structures within the framework of Distributed Morphology. We argue that the blocking effect is sensitive not to structural adjacency, as previously argued for Japanese (Harley, 2008), but instead to linear adjacency. Our findings constitute a strong argument for the post-syntactic resolution of derivational morphology, pace Distributed Morphology and contra the Lexicalist Hypothesis. In particular, the sensitivity to linear adjacency shows that the operations relevant to the blocking effect must occur post-linearization, and therefore contributes to our understanding of the timing of post-syntactic operations.