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Projection Principle

SYNTAX: principle which says that

(i)  representations at each level of representation
     are projections of the features of lexical items,
     notably their  subcategorization features, and that
(ii) if F is a lexical feature, it is projected at each
     syntactic level of representation (  D-structure, 
      S-structure,  Logical Form).
The Projection Principle entails that sentence (iii) cannot have the structure in (iv).
(iii)  I believe him to be a fool
(iv)   I believe [NP him] [S to be a fool]
The NP him is the subject of the embedded sentence at the level of D-structure, so it has to be analyzed as its subject at all syntactic levels of representation, even though it has objective case. See also Extended Projection Principle.
LIT. Chomsky, N. (1986a)
Chomsky, N. (1981)