L'imperativo vero e suppletivo nei dialetti italiani
The Graduate School, Stony Brook University: Stony Brook, NY.
This thesis provides evidence for the need of a re-analysis of the imperative mood based on data taken from thirty-six minor Romance varieties (so-called `dialects') spoken on the Italian peninsula. A clear distinction exists between the imperative of the second person singular and the first person plural based on the following characteristics: verbal morphology, the negation of the verb, the position of stress in the presence of enclitics, the lexical realization of enclitics, and the position of clitics with respect to the verb. In each of these varieties, the second person singular is distinct from the first person plural in at least two of the above traits. In the first person plural, the realization of these traits is identical to their realization in the indicative, while for the second person singular, the realization of these traits does not reflect the indicative, but is unique to the imperative paradigm. Because of this, I propose that there are two forms of the imperative with distinct syntactic and morphological structures: the `true' imperative and the `suppletive' imperative. The true imperative consists of the second person singular and behaves distinctly from the indicative with respect to at least two of the traits listed above, while the suppletive imperative consists of the first person plural and behaves like the indicative in at least two of the traits listed above. The second person plural behaves like a true imperative in some varieties and a suppletive imperative in others; however, the first person plural and second person singular never behave in the same way, which shows further evidence for the need of a re-analysis of the imperative. I propose that true imperatives are non-finite forms which receive the illocutionary force of giving an order from an empty modal within the syntactic structure. On the other hand, suppletive imperatives, though non-finite, do not receive their illocutionary force from within the syntactic structure. The absence of such a modal in the suppletive imperative results in a resemblance to finite forms like the indicative, which also lack such a modal.