Wh-Movements in both English Language and Jordanian Arabic: A Comparative Study

Yazeed Hammouri


This research paper addresses a particular type of wh-movement; namely, focus wh-movement, which targets a different landing site in comparison with the normal wh-movement (Lee, 2001:10). In the former, a proposed interrogative wh-phrase moves to the specifier position (Spec) of the focus phrase (FocusP), whereas in the latter the fronted wh-phrase lands in the Spec of the force Phrase (ForceP). This research argues for the existence of focus wh-movement in Jordanian Arabic (henceforth, JA). In addition, it draws a comparison between JA and English which exhibit this kind of wh-movement with difference pertaining to the type of wh-questions (either direct or indirect). Additionally, this research argues the notion that Spec of FocusP serves as a landing site for focus wh-movement (like English) and an intermediate landing site for the normal wh-movement (unlike English).


FocusP, wh-movement, direct and indirect wh-questions, comparison, languages.

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