The Limits of Syntactic Variation
John Benjamins Publishing, 2008 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 521 pages
Against the background of the past half century s typological and generative work on comparative syntax, this volume brings together 16 papers considering what we have learned and may still be able to learn about the nature and extent of syntactic variation. More specifically, it offers a multi-perspective critique of the Principles and Parameters approach to syntactic variation, evaluating the merits and shortcomings of the pre-Minimalist phase of this enterprise and considering and illustrating the possibilities opened up by recent empirical and theoretical advances. Contributions focus on four central topics: firstly, the question of the locus of variation, whether the attested variation may plausibly be understood in parametric terms and, if so, what form such parameters might take; secondly, the fate of one of the most prominent early parameters, the Null Subject Parameter; thirdly, the matter of parametric clusters more generally; and finally, acquisition issues.
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agreement Alexiadou analysis approach argued Brazilian Portuguese Cambridge Cape Verdean Creole Case-F Chinese Chomsky clause clitic constraints context correlations Creole Creole languages cross-linguistic dative deictic derivation discussion domain Dutch elements ellipsis embedded subject English example existential fact Feco finite Finnish formal features French functional categories functional heads Gianni grammar Haitian Creole Haspelmath Holmberg interpretation Italian John Benjamins Kayne language acquisition lexical items licensed Linguistic Inquiry microparametric Minimalist morphology movement n-words negation negative marker Newmeyer nominal noun null expletives null subject languages null subjects object overt pronouns Oxford parametric variation phonological Polysynthesis possible predictions present principles principles and parameters pro-drop language pronominal pronouns properties proposal question radical pro-drop referential relation Rizzi semantic sentences silent arguments SpecFP specific subject position syntactic syntax Tense theory theta tion topic Turkish typology uneg uninterpretable features University verb wh-movement word order