International Journal of Innovation and Applied Studies
ISSN: 2028-9324     CODEN: IJIABO     OCLC Number: 828807274     ZDB-ID: 2703985-7
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Subject Agreement in Amazigh

Volume 21, Issue 2, September 2017, Pages 231–238

 Subject Agreement in Amazigh

Naima Omari1

1 Associate Professor, Faculty of Chariaa, Ibn Zohr University, Agadir, Morocco

Original language: English

Received 16 February 2017

Copyright © 2017 ISSR Journals. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The paper, conducted within the framework of the Minimalist Program, considers the nature and content of the subject agreement relation. The discussions are based on data from Amazigh, in particular the Tashelhit variety spoken in the southwest of Morocco. In the suggested analysis, I show that Amazigh exhibits two types of subject agreement, namely subject-verb agreement and operator-bound agreement. In subject-verb agreement constructions, agreement on the verb is rich. I argue that in such constructions agreement is not itself a functional head. Rather, agreement is a relation between a head and its specifier in which features of the head and specifier must match. As such, the verb agrees with its subject in its base position; no movement of the verb or the subject is required for the verb to agree with its subject in terms of phi-features. In operator-bound agreement constructions, the verb shows no agreement with the extracted subject. More specifically, a discontinuous affix of invariable form / i __n / always appears on the verb. I argue that in local extraction of the subject in wh-questions, relatives and clefts, the invariable affix on the verb is the expression of an agreement relation holding between a verb and an operator with a [+Focus] feature in the specifier of the complementizer phrase.

Author Keywords: Subject-verb agreement, operator-bound agreement, Focus, Amazigh, Minimalist Program.

How to Cite this Article

Naima Omari, “Subject Agreement in Amazigh,” International Journal of Innovation and Applied Studies, vol. 21, no. 2, pp. 231–238, September 2017.