Improper movement

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Improper movement is a illicit movement from an A-bar-position to an A-position, as in (i):

(i) * [IP Johni seems [CP t'i [IP ti knows it all]]]

The intermediate trace, t'i, being a variable since it occupies an A-bar position, violates principle C of the Binding Theory, because it is A-bound by John.


Utrecht Lexicon of Linguistics


  • Chomsky, N. 1986b. Barriers, MIT Press, Cambridge, Mass.
  • Haegeman, L. 1991. Introduction to Government and Binding Theory, Oxford, Blackwell.