Syntax V
November 23, 2009
Weekday Update
• Syntax homework will be posted after class today
• …due on Friday.
• On Wednesday, we will work on a few more practice
syntax exercises.
• Afterwards, we’ll wrap up the term with an analysis of
meaning:
• Pragmatics + Semantics
Let’s Recap
• So far, we’ve talked about how syntactic rules operate
on different lexical categories:
• N, V, A, Adv
• P, Con, Det, Pro, Deg, Aux, C
• A general set of rules (called “Merge”) puts these
lexical categories together to form a variety of different
phrases:
• NP, VP, AP, PP, CP, IP
• Elements within these phrases include:
• Heads, complements, specifiers, modifiers
Modifiers?
IP
I’
NP
the police
I
VP
[+past]
V’
V
shot
In this tree, the police are
using the rifles to shoot
the terrorists.
PP
P’
NP
Det
N’
P
NP
the
N
with
rifles
terrorists
The PP is a modifier of the VP
here, not a complement.
= it’s not required by the verb.
More Modifiers
• From the last Quick Write:
IP
NP
I’
She
I
In this interpretation, “really badly”
modifies “wants”.
VP
[-past] V’
AdvP
Adv’
V
CP
Deg
wants
IP
really Adv
(I’m glossing over
some of the
structure here)
I
VP
badly
to
V
NP
play
tennis
More Modifiers
IP
NP
I’
She
I
In this interpretation, “really badly”
modifies “play”.
VP
[-past] V’
V
CP
wants
IP
(I’m glossing over
some of the
structure here)
I
VP
to
V
NP
AdvP
play
tennis
really badly
Language Universals
• All languages have phrases with heads and complements.
• All languages have nouns and verbs.
• All languages can exhibit recursion.
• Linguists hypothesize:
• All of this information is part of Universal Grammar (UG)
• Children do not need to learn these aspects of grammar
from their environment.
• But: languages can differ syntactically within these
universal limits.
Language Choices
• One syntactic feature which differs between languages:
head-first vs. head-final
• English is a head-first language
• = the head of the phrase precedes any complements.
• For example:
V’  V (NP) (PP)
N’  N (PP)
A’  A (PP)
P’  P (NP)
In general: X’  X (Complement)
Language Choices
• Other languages are head-final
• Ex: Japanese
• The head of the phrase in Japanese always follows its
complements:
In general: X’  (YP) X
Example: P’  NP P
niwa-de
“garden in”
N
=
“in the garden”
P
• By the way: in languages like these, “prepositions” are
called “post-positions”
Syntactic Typology
• Sentences in head-final languages usually follow the
pattern: subject - object - verb (SOV)
• Japanese examples:
Taro-ga
inu-o
mitsuketa
Taro-subject marker dog-object marker found
“Taro found a dog.”
Inu-ga
niwa-de
dog-subject marker garden-in
asonde
iru
playing
is
“The dog is playing in the garden.”
Syntactic Typology
• There are six possible orders for subject, verb, and
object in a sentence.
• All six orders have been attested in at least one of the
world’s languages.
• 44% of the world’s languages are SOV languages.
Japanese, Korean, Turkish
• 35% of the world’s languages are SVO languages.
English, French, Chinese
• 19% of the world’s languages are VSO languages.
Irish, Arabic, Welsh
Syntactic Typologies
• 2% of the world’s languages are VOS languages.
Aramaic, Hawaiian, Tagalog, Maori
• OSV languages are very rare
Xavante, Jamamadi (spoken in Brazil)
• OVS languages are the rarest of all
Guarijio (northwest Mexico), Hixkaryana (also Brazil)
• Another OVS language: Klingon
• Some languages have free word order
Dyirbal (spoken in Australia) (by about five people)
Yodish
• What sort of language does Yoda speak?
• Some examples are (relatively) straightforward:
• My home this is.
• To Obi-Wan you listen.
• In these sentences, the complement of the verb moves
to the front of the sentence.
• (= OSV)
• The others are slightly different:
• Help you I can.
• Take you to him I will.
• In these two, Yoda moves the whole VP to the front.
Wait…things move?
• Movement rules can explain syntactic patterns in language
that phrase structure rules alone cannot account for.
• For instance: some sentences are systematically related to
other sentences.
Declarative
Interrogative
The boy is sleeping.
Is the boy sleeping?
The boy has slept.
Has the boy slept?
The boy can sleep.
Can the boy sleep?
The boy will sleep.
Will the boy sleep?
The boy did sleep.
Did the boy sleep?
• What’s the pattern?
What’s the Pattern?
• Declarative sentences like “The boy is sleeping” can be
generated with the usual syntactic rules.
IP
I’
NP
Det
N’
I
VP
the
N
is
V’
boy
V
sleeping
• We get the interrogative sentence “Is the boy
sleeping?” by inverting the order of the subject and the
auxiliary.
Inversion
CP
C’
C
IP
I’
NP
Det
N’
I
VP
the
N
is
V’
boy
V
sleeping
Inversion
CP
• Note: the auxiliary verb moves
from one head slot to another.
C’
C
IP
I’
NP
Det
N’
I
VP
the
N
is
V’
boy
V
sleeping
• Rule: move the I head to the C node.
• This “inversion” rule creates a yes/no question.
Inversion Results
CP
C’
C
The movement leaves a
“trace” (t) behind in the I
I’ slot.
IP
is
NP
Det
N’
I
VP
the
N
t
V’
boy
• The C slot has to be marked
with a [+Q] (for “question”) to
make this movement happen.
V
[+Q]
• …like the I slot being marked
for tense.
sleeping
Transformations
• The syntactic rules that we’ve seen so far are phrase
structure rules:
• NP  Det N’
• P’  P NP
• A rule that generates one kind of sentence from another
sentence is called a transformational rule.
• “Transformations” give us the questions for “free”…
• so long as our phrase structure rules generate the
corresponding declarative sentences.
A More Complex Case
• Does our transformational rule work for this sentence?
The chicken crossed the road.
• Maybe.
• To create this question: “Did the chicken cross the road?”
• …it is first necessary to add the auxiliary verb “do”.
• = “Do” insertion
• The chicken crossed the road. 
• The chicken did cross the road. 
• Did the chicken cross the road?
• In English, it is not possible to invert non-auxiliary verbs.
Split-Levels
• Syntactic phrase structure rules (“Merge”) create the
Deep Structure of a sentence.
• Transformation rules (“Move”) change the Deep
Structure into the Surface Structure that we see in
interrogative sentences.
• Phonology analogy:
• Underlying representation = Deep Structure
• Surface representation = Surface Structure
• In both cases, this is called a derivation.
• and multiple rules can apply before the final product
appears on the surface.
A More Complex Case
• Does our transformational rule work for this sentence?
• Bob said that the chicken crossed the road.
• Maybe.
• There are actually two options:
• Did Bob say that the chicken crossed the road?
• *Did Bob said that the chicken cross the road?
• Yes/No questions can only be formed from the main
(highest level) sentence.
• They cannot be formed from an embedded sentence.
• The Complementizer (“that”) fills the C slot and prevents
an embedded auxiliary from moving up.
Wh Questions
• Here’s another relationship between sentences:
Declarative
Interrogative
Bart kicked the ball.
What did Bart kick?
Lisa put the leash on the table.
Where did Lisa put the leash?
Marge sent a card to Selma.
Who did Marge send a card to?
• These questions are known as “Wh-Questions”
• why, who, where, when, what, how
Wh Question Rules
• The formation of these questions is considerably more
complex.
Step 1: Wh-substitution
Substitute impersonal NPs with “what”
Substitute personal NPs with “who”
Substitute location PPs with “where”
etc.
• Examples:
Bart kicked the ball.  Bart kicked what?
Lisa put the leash on the table. 
Lisa put the leash where?
Wh Movement Rules
• Step 2: Move (or insert) the auxiliary verb to the
beginning of the sentence.
Bart kicked what?  Did Bart kick what?
Lisa put the leash where? 
Did Lisa put the leash where?
• Step 3: Move the Wh word to the beginning of the
sentence.
Did Bart kick what?  What did Bart kick?
Did Lisa put the leash where? 
Where did Lisa put the leash?
Wh-Movement
CP
C’
Spec
C
IP
I’
NP
Bart
I
VP
did
V’
V
NP
kick
what
Wh-Movement
CP
C’
Spec
C
did
IP
I’
NP
Bart
I
VP
t
V’
V
NP
kick
what
Wh-Movement
The Wh- particle moves
from a non-head position to
another non-head position.
CP
C’
NP
What C
did
IP
I’
NP
Bart
(so it doesn’t cross paths
with move #1)
I
VP
t
V’
V
kick
NP
t
Questions around the World
• In other languages, questions can be formed by moving
any verb (not just an auxiliary) to the front of the sentence.
• Dutch:
Femke leest veel boeken.
“Femke reads many books.”
• Q:
Leest Femke veel boeken?
reads Femke many books
“Does Femke read many books?”
Wh non-movement
• Some languages form Wh questions without moving
anything.
• Japanese:
Taro-ga
nani-o
mitsuketa-no?
Taro-subject
what
found-question marker
“What did Taro find?”
• Swahili:
Ulipatia
nani
kitabu
you gave
who
a book
“Who did you give a book?”
Principles and Parameters
• Language has universal features = principles
• Nouns, verbs, etc.
• Phrases with heads and complements.
• Individual languages have options = parameters
• Head-first or head-last?
• Wh-movement or no Wh-movement?
• Kids acquiring language get the universal principles for
free;
• it’s part of Universal Grammar (UG)
• …but they have to figure out the “parameters” from what
they hear in the world around them, as they grow up.
Descargar

Document