Radek Šimík homepage


Recent and unpublished manuscripts


Information structure and its relation to syntax, semantics, and reference
A slightly modified introduction to my cumulative habilitation thesis Studies in information structure and reference (defended at the Charles University, Prague, in June 2022).


The elimination of formal wh-features and a theory of free wh-movement
In this paper I argue that formal wh-features can and should be dispensed with. Wh-movement is an instance of free non-feature-driven movement. The core evidence comes from (Slavic) modal existential wh-constructions, in which the landing site of wh-movement can be CP, VP, AP, AdvP, or NP. The landing site of wh-movement in particular constructions is derived from interpretable properties of those constructions, such as the Q(uestion) feature in questions.


On free choice-like wh-based expressions in Czech
A corpus-based study exploring the distribution of four free choice-like items in Czech (leckdo, ledakdo, ledaskdo, kdekdo). These items are recognized as free choice-like because they can be used in the so-called `indiscriminative' use of free choice items (e.g. `he's not just anybody'). The study shows that they also share some distributional properties with free choice items, as most of them appear in non-episodic (generic, modal) contexts.

Recent presentations and presentations with no paper version


How to derive a relative pronoun from an interrogative one
Thursday Interdisciplinary Colloquium, Tel Aviv (online), 17 December 2020

What relative pronoun morphology reveals about relative clause typology
Linguistic Mondays at UFAL, Praha (online), 2 November 2020

What relative pronoun morphology reveals about relative clause typology
Linguistic Mondays at UFAL, Praha (online), 2 November 2020

Relativní věty uvozené výrazem jak
Jazykovědné sdružení, Praha (online), 8 October 2020

Sémantika a pragmatika slovanského slovosledu: Experimentální a korpusové perspektivy
Virtual talk at Ostrava University, 27 April 2020


Interpreting Slavic bare NPs
Presented at Leibniz-ZAS in Berlin, 5 June 2019


On wh-questions, wh-relatives, and their kin
Presented at GLOW41 in Budapest


Epistemic indefinites under epistemic modals in Czech
Formal Descriptions of Slavic Languages (FDSL) 10, Leipzig
This handout is made available here because it contains a small corpus study of Czech epistemic indefinites that didn't fit into the proceedings paper.


Variable binding and the person case constraint
Rajesh Bhatt and Radek Šimík
Meeting of the Israel Association for Theoretical Linguistics (IATL) 25 | Beer Sheva, Israel
We characterize a restriction on clitic clusters (first observed by Roca 1992), which we call the Clitic Binding Restriction: in the presence of an indirect object clitic a direct object clitic cannot be bound. We show that this restriction is related to the more familiar Person Case Constraint (Bonet 1991) and propose a unified analysis. We also discuss some consequences for the binding theory.


Wh-words in modal existential constructions as non-canonical free choice items
Workshop of Free Choiceness: Facts, Models, and Problems | ESSLLI, Hamburg
This work capitalizes on some similarities between free choice (and more generally polarity sensitive) items and wh-words in modal existential wh-constructions (Grosu 2004).


Czech nominal attributive apposition
Workshop on Parenthesis and Sentence Amalgamation | Groningen
A small investigation into the properties of a particular kind of attributive apposition in Czech. The apposition discussed involves an invariable demonstrative pronoun `to', whose presence has both formal and semantic consequences.

Co dokáže co: interakce vidu a příčinných otázkových slov v češtině
Mezinarodní setkaní mladých lingvistů 8 | Olomouc


Why the hell what: Remarks on the syntax and semantics of 'why' and 'what' in Czech
Syntax AiO Meeting (SAM) 3 | Tilburg
On a puzzling interaction between Czech verbal aspect and two causal question words, `why' and `what'.

Teaching materials


Definiteness and articleless languages
Letní škola lingvistiky | Dačice


Motivating word order differences: Givenness and scrambling
Block seminar at the Palacký University Olomouc

Aktuální členění větné: Danost a její formální projevy
Letní škola lingvistiky | Dačice


The relation between information structure and syntax
Graduate course, winter semester | Potsdam

Issues in wh-syntax and semantics
EGG summer school 2011 | České Budějovice

Introduction to the semantics of questions
EGG summer school 2011 | České Budějovice

Annotated bibliography

An annotated bibliography on modal existential constructions and existential free relatives
An updated version of the appendix from my thesis (last updated: December 2019)