Restricting the restrictive relativizer


Date created: | Last Updated:


Creating DOI. Please wait...

Create DOI

Category: Project

Description: We investigate internal and stylistic factors affecting binary and ternary relativizer choice in subject (that vs which) and non-subject (that vs which vs zero) relative clauses. We employ a novel methodological approach to predicting relativizers: Bayesian regression modeling with the dimensional reduction of model inputs via factor analysis. Our factor analysis is motivated by the high degree of redundancy and collinearity in natural language data, while Bayesian regression models are robust to effects of data sparseness and (near) separation. We find that in both types of relative clauses, the more marked variant (which) is preferred in complex contexts, while the unmarked variant (that, or zero in NSRCs) is favored in contexts where the relative clause is short and more fully integrated with the NP it modifies. We also find that use of which is somewhat more sensitive to stylistic considerations in subject than in non-subject relative clauses, and that which correlates most strongly with features associated with lexical density, e. g. ‘nouniness’, rather than those often associated with formality, e. g. passivization and sentence length.

License: CC-By Attribution 4.0 International


Published as: Grafmiller, Jason, Benedikt Szmrecsanyi & Lars Hinrichs. 2016. Restricting the restrictive relativizer: Constraints on subject and non-subject English relative clauses. Corpus Linguistics and Linguistic Theory, Online Ahead of Print. doi: 10.1515/cllt-2016-0015 This repository contains the dataset, annotation manual, and R code for the analysis reported in the article and supplemen...


Loading files...



Recent Activity

Loading logs...

OSF does not support the use of Internet Explorer. For optimal performance, please switch to another browser.
This website relies on cookies to help provide a better user experience. By clicking Accept or continuing to use the site, you agree. For more information, see our Privacy Policy and information on cookie use.

Start managing your projects on the OSF today.

Free and easy to use, the Open Science Framework supports the entire research lifecycle: planning, execution, reporting, archiving, and discovery.