New PDF release: A Performance Theory of Order and Constituency

By John A. Hawkins

ISBN-10: 0511554281

ISBN-13: 9780511554285

ISBN-10: 0521372615

ISBN-13: 9780521372619

ISBN-10: 0521378672

ISBN-13: 9780521378673

During this significant new booklet, John A. Hawkins provides a brand new concept of linear ordering in syntax. He argues that processing supplies an easy, sensible reason for syntactic ideas of ordering, in addition to for the choice between ordering variations in languages and buildings within which edition is feasible. Insights from generative syntax, typological experiences of language universals, and psycholinguistic experiences of language processing are mixed to teach that there's a profound correspondence among functionality and grammar.

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I suggested in ch. 4 that we must think rather more broadly about the grammar-processing interface and ask not just whether some structures are difficult or not, but also how they can be successfully used at all in real time, given the limited and often degenerate nature of the speech stream - to use the analogy with the logical problem of language acquisition again. But certainly difficulty will remain a fundamental concept in this context, and I cautioned against premature A theory of structural complexity 25 attempts to equate this notion with "impossible to process," arguing instead for a more gradient approach in terms of degrees of processing difficulty with correlated cross-linguistic variation phenomena, such as implicational hierarchies.

Processing theories will be offered for these, and will be supported by performance data taken either from the published literature or collected specifically for the present purpose (cf. g. ch. 4). In some cases I will appeal to what we might call the logical problem of language performance (to borrow a phrase from the related logical problem of language acquisition, cf. Hornstein and Lightfoot 1981). That is, we need to ask how it is possible for language users to successfully produce or comprehend a given structure in real time.

For these languages it is natural to propose that the morphology should be capable of contributing to the 28 The grammaticalization of processing principles definition of the structurally related nodes that structurally integrate X within a clause. 9), the morphology may reduce the SD of one of them: the accusative-marked NP will have a nominative sister in its SD, but the nominative will not have the accusative in its SD. By removing the accusative from the SD for the nominative, we will be able to make similar grammatical predictions for case-marking languages to those we make for English.

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A Performance Theory of Order and Constituency by John A. Hawkins

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