Minimal Ideas: Syntactic Studies in the Minimalist Frameworkby Werner Abraham
The articles in this volume are inspired by the Minimalist Program first outlined in Chomsky’s MIT Fall term class lectures of 1991 and in his seminal paper “A Minimalist Program for Linguistic Theory”. The articles seek to develop further some key idea in the Minimalist Program, sometimes in ways deviating from the course taken by Chomsky.
The articles are preceded by a 40 page introduction into the minimalist framework. The introduction pays special attention to the question how the minimalist framework developed out of the Principles and Parameters (Government and Binding) framework. The introduction serves as a guide through the entire volume, presenting the issues to be discussed in the articles in detail, and offering a thematic overview over the volume as a whole.
Most of the articles in this volume are concerned with issues raised in Chomsky’s first two minimalist papers, namely “A Minimalist Program for Linguistic Theory” (1993, first distributed in 1992) and “Bare Phrase Structure” (1995a, first distributed 1994). In acknowledgment of this, each article starts out with a quote from Chomsky (1993, 1995a). This quote also serves to highlight the particular grammatical or theoretical issue that is primarily discussed in the relevant article.
Several articles relate issues raised in Chomsky’s first two minimalist papers to the basic ideas in Kayne’s book, The Antisymmetry of Syntax (1994, distributed in part in manuscript form in 1993). In many respects, therefore, these articles develop alternatives to ideas proposed in chapter 4, “Categories and Transformations,” of Chomsky’s most recent book, The Minimalist Program (1995b). Some of the articles contain references to chapter 4, and some comments on similarities and differences between ideas developed in these papers and in chapter 4 of Chomsky 1995b can also be found in the Introduction to this volume.
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