Microvariation and Microparameters. Some Quantitative Remarks
This paper deals with the distribution of subject clitics in northern Italian dialects. Building on quantitative data, I argue that the observed microvariation cannot derive (only) from external linguistic factors such as contact, areal diffusion, sociolinguistic dynamics, etc. Rather, a principled feature-based analysis is needed in order to account for certain patterns of defectivity and syncretism that, although typologically rare, occur systematically in northern dialects.