Sentences such as 'What Fred does is complain' and 'What Fred does is important' have both been labeled as pseudo-clefts, though of two distinct types. We provide four tests to structurally distinguish such constructions. Entailment patterns and a number of structural ties between the post-copular constituent and specific constituents of the pre-copular relative clause suggest using the label ‘pseudo-cleft’ for the former type only. This paper also examines certain cases of pseudo-clefts with no simple correlates, and vice versa, to argue – contra Higgins 1973 – that these do not necessarily contradict the existence of a structural connection (a transformation, in the sense of Z. S. Harris) between the members of pairs formed by a pseudo-cleft and its non-cleft counterpart.
|Title of host publication||Proceedings of the 29th International Conference on Lexis and Grammar|
|Number of pages||11|
|Publication status||Published - 2010|