This article explains three known constraints on scope reconstruction—reconstruction is blocked into wh-islands, after remnant movement, and after countercyclic merger—by postulating an underlying condition on semantic reconstruction, which follows naturally from Minimalist assumptions on chain interpretation in combination with the principle of compositionality. The result is a unifying alternative analysis of the data discussed in Cresti 1995, Fox 1999, and Sauerland and Elbourne 2002, among others.

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