Mirrors and Microparameters: Phrase Structure beyond Free Word Order

Mirrors and Microparameters: Phrase Structure beyond Free Word Order

by David Adger, Daniel Harbour, Laurel J. Watkins
     
 

ISBN-10: 0521517567

ISBN-13: 9780521517560

Pub. Date: 12/31/2009

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

What is the nature of syntactic structure? Why do some languages have radically free word order ('nonconfigurationality')? Do parameters vary independently (the micro-view) or can they co-vary en masse (the macro-view)? Mirrors and Microparameters examines these questions by looking beyond the definitional criterion of nonconfigurationality - that arguments may be

Overview

What is the nature of syntactic structure? Why do some languages have radically free word order ('nonconfigurationality')? Do parameters vary independently (the micro-view) or can they co-vary en masse (the macro-view)? Mirrors and Microparameters examines these questions by looking beyond the definitional criterion of nonconfigurationality - that arguments may be freely ordered, omitted, and split. Drawing on data from Kiowa, a member of the largely undescribed Kiowa-Tanoan language family, the book reveals that classically nonconfigurational languages can nonetheless exhibit robustly configurational effects. Reconciling the cooccurrence of such freedom with such rigidity has major implications for the Principles and Parameters program. This approach to nonconfigurational languages challenges widespread assumptions of linguistic theory and throws light on the syntactic structures, ordering principles, and nature of parametrization that comprise Universal Grammar.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521517560
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
12/31/2009
Series:
Cambridge Studies in Linguistics Series, #122
Pages:
204
Product dimensions:
5.98(w) x 8.98(h) x 0.59(d)

Related Subjects

Table of Contents

1. Introduction; 2. Nonconfigurationality and polysynthesis; 3. The clausal spin; 4. Making mirrors; 5. Interface properties of clausal domains; 6. Anti-quantification and the syntax-semantics interface; 7. Conclusion.

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