A Theory of Syntax: Minimal Operations and Universal Grammar by Norbert Hornstein

By Norbert Hornstein

Human language turns out to have arisen approximately in the final 50-100,000 years. In evolutionary phrases, this can be the mere blink of an eye fixed. If this is often right, then a lot of what we think of exact to language needs to in reality contain operations to be had in pre-linguistic cognitive domain names. during this ebook Norbert Hornstein, some of the most influential linguists engaged on syntax, discusses a topical set of matters in syntactic thought, together with a couple of unique proposals on the leading edge of study during this sector. He offers a idea of the fundamental grammatical operations and means that there's just one that's targeted to language. If this thought is true then this narrows the evolutionary hole among verbal and non-verbal primates, therefore facilitating the speedy evolutionary emergence of our linguistic ability.

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In particular, we get a derivation something like (11): First we build the gerund (11a). Then we select V, copy DP and merge it (11b). Then we merge the gerund and the VP. The gerund is the subject here, and the DP has merged 20 21 22 That SWM is involved is proposed in Hornstein (2001, 2003). One point is worth mentioning: Hornstein (2001) and Nunes (2004) argue that adjunction obeys the EC (pace Chomsky 1993). Interestingly, the EC is critical in deriving CED effects in those cases where SWM from an adjunct is not licensed.

TP . . [vP . . [vP . . t . ][adjunct . . t . ]]]] As the relevant adjuncts are typically thought to adjoin to vP or some other projection in the vicinity of vP, and as PGs involve some CP position as the ultimate landing site, we should expect the surface form of such constructions to end up in configurations in which the A -expression c-commands all the positions through which it has moved. In short, if PGs are formed by overt sidewards A -movement, then we expect the resulting structure to have the A -element c-command its various previous launch sites.

1 Introduction: The sources of c-command 19 this question is also timely given recent minimalist inquiry. More specifically, some common assumptions currently in play (and which we review below) suggest that c-command is a necessary by-product of some kinds of Mergebased grammars. In effect, it is what falls out if UG is structured in a certain way. The aim here will be to specify what that way is. A caveat before proceeding. 2 The game played here takes these claims as fixed points and considers whether the role of c-command in various parts of the grammar can be derived from more basic assumptions.

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