I was struck by an odd (to my ear) phrasing by Richard Gere is a preview for what looks to be a terrible romantic comedy/drama: "Any man is a fool who doesn't appreciate you." I'm sure I've heard this construction before, but it definitely rubs me the wrong way. The problem is the isolation of the relative clause from the NP it modifies. I would always phrase such a thought as "Any X who X is X." Searching for "any * is * who *" on Google returns several hits of the same phrasing, so clearly it's not a rare construction. After careful consideration, I'm unable to make heads nor tails of it syntactically. The incorrect interpretation would be the following:
With "any" the interpretation doesn't make much sense, but replace it with "every" and there could be real ambiguity, at least in print. The only way I could see generating kind of construction syntactically is some sort of movement, where the CP starts out under the NP "any man" and then moves lower down. This is also a good example of the cognitive preference for low attachment, i.e., we want the CP "who does not appreciate you" to be attached to the lower NP, not the higher one the speaker wants us to attach it to.
Jerome Stueart interview (pt. 3)
4 years ago