This book introduces formal grammar theories that play a role in current linguistic theorizing (Phrase Structure Grammar, Transformational Grammar/Government & Binding, Generalized Phrase Structure Grammar, Lexical Functional Grammar, Categorial Grammar, Head-Driven Phrase Structure Grammar, Construction Grammar, Tree Adjoining Grammar). The key assumptions are explained and it is shown how the respective theory treats arguments and adjuncts, the active/passive alternation, local reorderings, verb placement, and fronting of constituents over long distances. The analyses are explained with German as the object language.
The second part of the book compares these approaches with respect to their predictions regarding language acquisition and psycholinguistic plausibility. The nativism hypothesis, which assumes that humans posses genetically determined innate language-specific knowledge, is critically examined and alternative models of language acquisition are discussed. The second part then addresses controversial issues of current theory building such as the question of flat or binary branching structures being more appropriate, the question whether constructions should be treated on the phrasal or the lexical level, and the question whether abstract, non-visible entities should play a role in syntactic analyses. It is shown that the analyses suggested in the respective frameworks are often translatable into each other. The book closes with a chapter showing how properties common to all languages or to certain classes of languages can be captured.View less
The papers in this volume were presented at the 47th Annual Conference on African Linguistics at UC Berkeley in 2016. The papers offer new descriptions of African languages and propose novel theoretical analyses of them. The contributions span topics in phonetics, phonology, syntax, semantics, and pragmatics and reflect the typological and genetic diversity of languages in Africa. Four papers in the volume examine Areal Features and Linguistic Reconstruction in Africa, and were presented at a special workshop on this topic held alongside the general session of ACAL.View less
In English, phonological double consonants only occur across morphological boundaries, for example, in affixation (e.g. in unnatural, innumerous). There are two possibilities for the phonetic realization of these morphological geminates: Either the phonological double is realized with a longer duration than a phonological singleton (gemination), or it is of the same duration as a singleton consonant (degemination).
The present book provides the first large-scale empirical study on the gemination with the five English affixes un-, locative in-, negative in-, dis- and -ly. Using corpus and experimental data, the predictions of various approaches to the morpho-phonological and the morpho-phonetic interface are tested. By finding out which approach can account best for the gemination pattern of English affixed words, important implications about the interplay between morphology, phonology and phonetics are drawn.View less
The organization of the lexicon, and especially the relations between groups of lexemes is a strongly debated topic in linguistics. Some authors have insisted on the lack of any structure of the lexicon. In this vein, Di Sciullo & Williams (1987: 3) claim that “[t]he lexicon is like a prison – it contains only the lawless, and the only thing that its inmates have in commonis lawlessness”. In the alternative view, the lexicon is assumed to have a rich structure that captures all regularities and partial regularities that exist between lexical entries.Two very different schools of linguistics have insisted on the organization of the lexicon. On the one hand, for theories like HPSG (Pollard & Sag 1994), but also some versions of construction grammar (Fillmore & Kay 1995), the lexicon is assumed to have a very rich structure which captures common grammatical properties between its members. In this approach, a type hierarchy organizes the lexicon according to common properties between items. For example, Koenig (1999: 4, among others), working from an HPSG perspective, claims that the lexicon “provides a unified model for partial regularties, medium-size generalizations, and truly productive processes”. On the other hand, from the perspective of usage-based linguistics, several authors have drawn attention to the fact that lexemes which share morphological or syntactic properties, tend to be organized in clusters of surface (phonological or semantic) similarity (Bybee & Slobin 1982; Skousen 1989; Eddington 1996). This approach, often called analogical, has developed highly accurate computational and non-computational models that can predict the classes to which lexemes belong. Like the organization of lexemes in type hierarchies, analogical relations between items help speakers to make sense of intricate systems, and reduce apparent complexity (Köpcke & Zubin 1984). Despite this core commonality, and despite the fact that most linguists seem to agree that analogy plays an important role in language, there has been remarkably little work on bringing together these two approaches. Formal grammar traditions have been very successful in capturing grammatical behaviour, but, in the process, have downplayed the role analogy plays in linguistics (Anderson 2015). In this work, I aim to change this state of affairs. First, by providing an explicit formalization of how analogy interacts with grammar, and second, by showing that analogical effects and relations closely mirror the structures in the lexicon. I will show that both formal grammar approaches, and usage-based analogical models, capture mutually compatible relations in the lexicon.View less
Deep parsing is the fundamental process aiming at the representation of the syntactic structure of phrases and sentences. In the traditional methodology this process is based on lexicons and grammars representing roughly properties of words and interactions of words and structures in sentences. Several linguistic frameworks, such as Headdriven Phrase Structure Grammar (HPSG), Lexical Functional Grammar (LFG), Tree Adjoining Grammar (TAG), Combinatory Categorial Grammar (CCG), etc., offer different structures and combining operations for building grammar rules. These already contain mechanisms for expressing properties of Multiword Expressions (MWE), which, however, need improvement in how they account for idiosyncrasies of MWEs on the one hand and their similarities to regular structures on the other hand. This collaborative book constitutes a survey on various attempts at representing and parsing MWEs in the context of linguistic theories and applications.View less
This book presents a new approach to studying the syntax of human language, one which emphasizes how we think about time. Tilsen argues that many current theories are unsatisfactory because those theories conceptualize syntactic patterns with spatially arranged structures of objects. These object-structures are atemporal and do not lend well to reasoning about time. The book develops an alternative conceptual model in which oscillatory systems of various types interact with each other through coupling forces, and in which the relative energies of those systems are organized in particular ways. Tilsen emphasizes that the two primary mechanisms of the approach – oscillators and energy levels – require alternative ways of thinking about time. Furthermore, his theory leads to a new way of thinking about grammaticality and the recursive nature of language. The theory is applied to a variety of syntactic phenomena: word order, phrase structure, morphosyntax, constituency, case systems, ellipsis, anaphora, and islands. The book also presents a general program for the study of language in which the construction of linguistic theories is itself an object of theoretical analysis.View less
Empirically, the book covers two areas: the morphosyntax of verbs and categories syncretic with the declarative complementizer in Slavic, together with a comparative look at the similar categories in Latvian (Baltic) and Basaá (Bantu). In the domain of verbs, the book investigates a curious instance of analytic vs. fusional realization of grammatical categories that we find in a semelfactive-iterative alternation in Czech and Polish, where a semelfactive verb stem such as in the Czech kop-n-ou-t ‘give a kick’ alternates with an iterative verb stem as in kop-a-t ‘kick repeatedly’. The iterative -aj stem is morphologi cally less complex than the semelfactive stem formed with the -n-ou sequence, which is paradoxical given an analysis of iteratives as categories whose syn-sem representation is more complex than semelfactives. In the domain of complementizers, the book focuses on cross-categorial paradigms that include an unexpected morphological containment (in Russian), a degree of morphological complexity (in Latvian), and an ABA pattern of syncretic alignment (in Basaá), which we do not expect to find if syncretism is restricted to adjacent cells in a paradigm (cf. Bobaljik 2012).
Analytically, the book focuses on the way the syntactic representations of these categories become realized as morphemes. In the general sense, then, this contribution belongs to a growing body of work that investigates the relation between syntactic structure and morphological form, understood as the amount of morphemes and their placement – in particular the prefix vs. suffix opposition. More specifically, however, the approach to lexicalization taken up in this book is informed by the results of research on syntax in the last quarter of a century, which show that syntactic representations are maximally fine-grained, the picture sometimes described as the “one feature per one syntactic head” dictum. Such a scenario has lead to the situation where syntactic representations can be submorphemic, in the sense that a lexical item corresponds to more than one syntactic head, a strand of research that has become known as Nanosyntax. This book investigates the state-of-art methodology of Nanosyntax in resolving the selected empirical problems in the domain of Slavic verbs and declarative complementizers, the problems that all appear to boil down to the way syntactic representations become realized as morphemes.View less
"Form" and "formalism" are a pair of highly productive and polysemous terms that occupy a central place in much linguistic scholarship. Diverse notions of "form" – embedded in biological, cognitive and aesthetic discourses – have been employed in accounts of language structure and relationship, while "formalism" harbours a family of senses referring to particular approaches to the study of language as well as representations of linguistic phenomena. This volume brings together a series of contributions from historians of science and philosophers of language that explore some of the key meanings and uses that these multifaceted terms and their derivatives have found in linguistics, and what these reveal about the mindset, temperament and daily practice of linguists, from the nineteenth century up to the present day.View less
This book presents evidence in support of the hypothesis that Ship English of the early Atlantic colonial period was a distinct variety with characteristic features. It is motivated by the recognition that late-seventeenth and early-eighteenth century sailors’ speech was potentially an influential variety in nascent creoles and English varieties of the Caribbean, yet few academic studies have attempted to define the characteristics of this speech. Therefore, the two principal aims of this study were, firstly, to outline the socio-demographics of the maritime communities and examine how variant linguistic features may have developed and spread among these communities, and, secondly, to generate baseline data on the characteristic features of Ship English. The methodology’s data collection strategy targeted written representations of sailors’ speech prepared or published between the dates 1620 and 1750, and prioritized documents that were composed by working mariners. These written representations were then analyzed following a mixed methods triangulation design that converged the qualitative and quantitative data to determine plausible interpretations of the most likely spoken forms. Findings substantiate claims that there was a distinct dialect of English that was spoken by sailors during the period of early English colonial expansion. They also suggest that Ship English was a sociolect formed through the mixing, leveling and simplification processes of koinization. Indicators suggest that this occupation-specific variety stabilized and spread in maritime communities through predominantly oral speech practices and strong affiliations among groups of sailors. It was also transferred to port communities and sailors’ home regions through regular contact between sailors speaking this sociolect and the land-based service-providers and communities that maintained and supplied the fleets. Linguistic data show that morphological characteristics of Ship English are evident at the word-level, and syntactic characteristics are evident not only in phrase construction but also at the larger clause and sentence levels, whilst discourse is marked by characteristic patterns of subordination and culture-specific interjection patterns. The newly-identified characteristics of Ship English detailed here provide baseline data that may now serve as an entry point for scholars to integrate this language variety into the discourse on dialect variation in Early Modern English period and the theories on pidgin and creole genesis as a result of language contact in the early colonial period.View less
This book tackles the divisive question of the Stative/Non-stative distinction by going straight to the root of the lexical items that have been at the heart of this discussion. It provides an analysis of property items (Dual Aspectual Forms) couched in the syntax-semantics interface eliminating the false dichotomy at the base of the controversy in the field and the suggestion that a lexical item needs be unambiguously Stative or Non-stative. What we see in this work is theoretical grounding for a flexible group of lexical items comprising both verbs and adjectives underlyingly with allowances made for derivation into either category. The result is a work that is conceptually and theoretically appealing and one that brings consensus.View less
La valence verbale est le phénomène qui lie le verbe à ses compléments. Elle intervient sur la construction du groupe verbal, la formation du passif, l'accord du participe passé, le choix des pronoms relatifs, celui des démonstratifs, des possessifs, des indéfinis, des pronoms personnels, des pronoms interrogatifs, l'emploi de l'impératif en liaison avec les pronoms personnels et la mise en relief des principales. Étant donné l'importance de la valence, alors que ce concept est fort peu enseigné dans les écoles ou collèges de France, il est nécessaire de mettre au point un système permettant de l'enseigner, de préférence avec la participation active des apprenants.View less
Le système "La Grammaire du FLE" , qui comprend 8 livres et un site Web, s’est construit par étapes de 2014 à 2019. Il couvre la totalité de la grammaire française, présentant certaines parties inédites, telle l’initiation à la phonétique et à la phonétique corrective y compris l’intonation marquée ou non-marquée, un approfondissement de la notion de valence verbale, une approche personnelle de l’emploi des temps simples du passé. En outre, il aborde d’une façon innovante l’emploi des temps grammaticaux en introduisant l’idée de traits pertinents temporels, censés remplacer les notions plus que fluctuantes d’un auteur à l’autre d’aspects et de modalités. Enfin, en utilisant les bases d’eGrammaire pour le français, la Grammaire du FLE explose les li-mites du français pour comparer l’emploi des temps du français, de l’anglais et de l’allemand Il repose sur le principe de la participation active de l'apprenant, en groupes, en plénum ou en travail individuel autonome sur ordinateur.View less
This volume contains the complete collection of published and unpublished work on German grammar by Tilman N. Höhle. It consists of two parts. The first part is Topologische Felder, a book-length manuscript that was written in 1983 but was never finished nor published. It is a careful examination of the topological properties of German sentences, including a discussion of typological assumptions. The second part assembles all other published and unpublished papers by Höhle on German grammar.
All of these papers were highly influential in German linguistics, in theoretical linguistics in general, and in a specific variant of theoretical linguistics, Head-Driven Phrase Structure Grammar. Topics covered are clause structure, constituent order, coordination, (verum) focus, word structure, the relationship between relative pronouns and verbs in V2, extraction, and the foundations of a theory of phonology in constraint-based grammar.View less
This volume provides an up-to-date discussion of a foundational issue that has recently taken centre stage in linguistic typology and which is relevant to the language sciences more generally: To what extent can cross-linguistic generalizations, i.e. statistical universals of linguistic structure, be explained by the diachronic sources of these structures? Everyone agrees that typological distributions are the result of complex histories, as “languages evolve into the variation states to which synchronic universals pertain” (Hawkins 1988). However, an increasingly popular line of argumentation holds that many, perhaps most, typological regularities are long-term reflections of their diachronic sources, rather than being ‘target-driven’ by overarching functional-adaptive motivations. On this view, recurrent pathways of reanalysis and grammaticalization can lead to uniform synchronic results, obviating the need to postulate global forces like ambiguity avoidance, processing efficiency or iconicity, especially if there is no evidence for such motivations in the genesis of the respective constructions. On the other hand, the recent typological literature is equally ripe with talk of "complex adaptive systems", "attractor states" and "cross-linguistic convergence". One may wonder, therefore, how much room is left for traditional functional-adaptive forces and how exactly they influence the diachronic trajectories that shape universal distributions. The papers in the present volume are intended to provide an accessible introduction to this debate. Covering theoretical, methodological and empirical facets of the issue at hand, they represent current ways of thinking about the role of diachronic sources in explaining grammatical universals, articulated by seasoned and budding linguists alike.View less
This book is an introductory course on formal semantics written in Portuguese. It presents the basics of a compositional interpretive system, using tools taken from logic and mathematics. No previous knowledge about formal approaches to meaning is presupposed. The book can be used as a one-semester course for upper-level undergraduate or by beginning graduate students. It will be of interest not only to linguists and linguistics students, but also to researchers and students from related areas, such as philosophy, cognitive sciences, and artificial intelligence. All chapters end with suggested readings and exercises, making it also suitable for self-learners. The book is divided into 7 chapters. Starting with an introductory chapter on the basics of truth-conditional semantics and formal approaches to meaning (Chapter 1), the core of the book covers semantic phenomena related to predicate saturation (Chapter 2), coordination and negation (Chapter 3), reference (Chapter 4), modification (Chapter 5), quantification (Chapter 6), and binding (Chapter 7).View less
Many descriptive grammars report the use of a linguistic pattern at the interface between discourse and syntax which is known generally as tail-head linkage. This volume takes an unprecedented look at this type of linkage across languages and shows that there exist three distinct variants, all subsumed under the hypernym bridging constructions. The chapters highlight the defining features of these constructions in the grammar and their functional properties in discourse. The volume reveals that: - Bridging constructions consist of two clauses: a reference clause and a bridging clause. Across languages, bridging clauses can be subordinated clauses, reduced main clauses, or main clauses with continuation prosody. - Bridging constructions have three variants: recapitulative linkage, summary linkage and mixed linkage. They differ in the formal makeup of the bridging clause. - In discourse, the functions that bridging constructions fulfil depend on the text genres in which they appear and their position in the text. - If a language uses more than one type of bridging construction, then each type has a distinct discourse function. - Bridging constructions can be optional and purely stylistic or mandatory and serve a grammatical purpose. - Although the difference between bridging constructions and clause repetition can be subtle, they maintain their own distinctive characteristics.View less
This book presents an in-depth description of information structure in Isthmus Zapotec, an Otomanguean language spoken by around 50,000 people in southeastern Oaxaca, Mexico, and represents the first book-length treatment of information structure in a Mesoamerican language. Three main observations motivate the study: 1. Strong documentation and a relatively large and active speaker community create a unique opportunity to document information structure in Isthmus Zapotec and to study the language as it is used by speakers in everyday life; 2. As a tonal and verb-initial language, the examination of Isthmus Zapotec represents a chance to explore the possible combinations of tone, intonation, morphology and verb-initial syntax that may occur in the coding of information structure; and 3. The close analysis of spontaneous speech in an endangered language contributes to our theoretical understanding of information structure and informs our knowledge of language documentation practices and revitalization efforts. Overall, the analysis presented here demonstrates the value and need for information structure studies to document and analyze naturally-occurring data.View less
Companies and organisations are increasingly using machine translation to improve efficiency and cost-effectiveness, and then edit the machine translated output to create a fluent text that adheres to given text conventions. This procedure is known as post-editing.
Translation and post-editing can often be categorised as problem-solving activities. When the translation of a source text unit is not immediately obvious to the translator, or in other words, if there is a hurdle between the source item and the target item, the translation process can be considered problematic. Conversely, if there is no hurdle between the source and target texts, the translation process can be considered a task-solving activity and not a problem-solving activity.
This study investigates whether machine translated output influences problem-solving effort in internet research, syntax, and other problem indicators and whether the effort can be linked to expertise. A total of 24 translators (twelve professionals and twelve semi-professionals) produced translations from scratch from English into German, and (monolingually) post-edited machine translation output for this study. The study is part of the CRITT TPR-DB database. The translation and (monolingual) post-editing sessions were recorded with an eye-tracker and a keylogging program. The participants were all given the same six texts (two texts per task).
Different approaches were used to identify problematic translation units. First, internet research behaviour was considered as research is a distinct indicator of problematic translation units. Then, the focus was placed on syntactical structures in the MT output that do not adhere to the rules of the target language, as I assumed that they would cause problems in the (monolingual) post-editing tasks that would not occur in the translation from scratch task. Finally, problem indicators were identified via different parameters like Munit, which indicates how often the participants created and modified one translation unit, or the inefficiency (InEff) value of translation units, i.e. the number of produced and deleted tokens divided by the final length of the translation. Finally, the study highlights how these parameters can be used to identify problems in the translation process data using mere keylogging data.View less