LINGUIST List 11.1210

Mon May 29 2000

Books: Syntax, Evolutionary Biology/Generative Ling

Editor for this issue: Scott Fults <scottlinguistlist.org>


Links to the websites of all LINGUIST's supporting publishers are available at the end of this issue.

Directory

  1. Jud Wolfskill, Essays on Minimalist Syntax in Honor of Howard Lasnik
  2. Jud Wolfskill, Evolutionary Biology/Generative Ling: Lingua ex Machina

Message 1: Essays on Minimalist Syntax in Honor of Howard Lasnik

Date: Wed, 24 May 2000 17:28:06 -0400
From: Jud Wolfskill <wolfskilMIT.EDU>
Subject: Essays on Minimalist Syntax in Honor of Howard Lasnik

The following is a book which readers of this list might find of
interest. For more information please visit
http://mitpress.mit.edu/promotions/books/MAREHS00


Step by Step

Essays on Minimalist Syntax in Honor of Howard Lasnik

edited by Roger Martin, David Michaels, and Juan Uriagereka


This collection of essays presents an up-to-date overview of research
in the minimalist program of linguistic theory. The book includes a new
essay by Noam Chomsky as well as original contributions from other
renowned linguists.


Roger Martin is Assistant Professor in the Institute of Modern
Languages and Cultures at the University of Tsukuba, Japan. David
Michaels is Professor Emeritus of Linguistics at the University of
Connecticut. Juan Uriagereka is Associate Professor of Linguistics at
the University of Maryland.


Contributors

Andrew Barss, Zeljko Boskovic, Noam Chomsky, Hamida Demirdache, Hiroto
Hoshi, Kyle Johnson, Roger Martin, Keiko Murasugi, Javier Ormazabal,
Mamoru Saito, Daiko Takahashi, Juan Uriagereka, Myriam
Uribe-Extebarria, Ewa Willim.


6 x 9, 500 pp., 1 illus., cloth ISBN 0-262-13361-X


MIT Press
Five Cambridge Center
Cambridge, MA 02142-1493 

Phone: (617) 253-2079
Fax: (617) 253-1709
http://mitpress.mit.edu
E-mail: wolfskilmit.edu
 

 
Mail to author|Respond to list|Read more issues|LINGUIST home page|Top of issue

Message 2: Evolutionary Biology/Generative Ling: Lingua ex Machina

Date: Wed, 24 May 2000 17:30:15 -0400
From: Jud Wolfskill <wolfskilMIT.EDU>
Subject: Evolutionary Biology/Generative Ling: Lingua ex Machina

The following is a book which readers of this list might find of
interest. For more information please visit
http://mitpress.mit.edu/promotions/books/CALIHS00


Lingua ex Machina

Reconciling Darwin and Chomsky with the Human Brain

William H. Calvin and Derek Bickerton


A machine for language? Certainly, say the neurophysiologists, busy
studying the language specializations of the human brain and trying to
identify their evolutionary antecedents. Linguists such as Noam Chomsky
talk about machinelike "modules" in the brain for syntax, arguing that
language is more an instinct (a complex behavior triggered by simple
environmental stimuli) than an acquired skill like riding a bicycle.


But structured language presents the same evolutionary problems as
feathered forelimbs for flight: you need a lot of specializations to
fly even a little bit. How do you get them, if evolution has no
foresight and the intermediate stages do not have intermediate payoffs?
Some say that the Darwinian scheme for gradual species self-improvement
cannot explain our most valued human capability, the one that sets us
so far above the apes, language itself.


William Calvin and Derek Bickerton suggest that other evolutionary
developments, not directly related to language, allowed language to
evolve in a way that eventually promoted a Chomskian syntax. They
compare these intermediate behaviors to the curb-cuts originally
intended for wheelchair users. Their usefulness was soon discovered by
users of strollers, shopping carts, rollerblades, and so on. The
authors argue that reciprocal altruism and ballistic movement planning
were "curb-cuts" that indirectly promoted the formation of structured
language. Written in the form of a dialogue set in Bellagio, Italy,
Lingua ex Machina presents a challenge to those who view the human
capacity for language as a winner-take-all war between Chomsky and
Darwin.


William H. Calvin is Affiliate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral
Sciences at the University of Washington, Seattle. His books include
The Cerebral Code (MIT Press, 1996). Derek Bickerton is Professor of
Linguistics, Emeritus, at the University of Hawaii, Honolulu. He is the
author of Roots of Language, Language, and Species, and Language and
Human Behavior.


6 x 9, 304 pp., 50 illus., cloth ISBN 0-262-03273-2

A Bradford Book

MIT Press
Five Cambridge Center
Cambridge, MA 02142-1493

Phone: (617) 253-2079
Fax: (617) 253-1709
http://mitpress.mit.edu
E-mail: wolfskilmit.edu 
Mail to author|Respond to list|Read more issues|LINGUIST home page|Top of issue
Pubs-postscript-html

----------------- Major Supporters ----------------

Academic Press http://www.academicpress.com

Athelstan Publications http://www.athel.com

Blackwell Publishers http://www.blackwellpublishers.co.uk/

Cambridge UP -USA http://www.cup.org

Cascadilla Press http://www.cascadilla.com/

Elsevier Science Ltd. http://www.elsevier.nl/

John Benjamins http://www.benjamins.com/

Kluwer Academic Publishers http://www.wkap.nl/

Lernout & Hauspie http://www.lhsl.com

Lincom Europa http://www.lincom-europa.com

MIT Press http://mitpress.mit.edu/books-legacy.tcl

Mouton de Gruyter http://www.deGruyter.de/hling.html

Multilingual Matters http://www.multilingual-matters.com/

Oxford UP http://www.oup-usa.org/

Routledge http://www.routledge.com/

St. Jerome Publishers http://www.mcc.ac.uk/stjerome
---------- Other Supporting Publishers ---------

Finno-Ugrian Society http://www.helsinki.fi/jarj/sus/

Graduate Linguistic Students' Assoc., Umass http://www.umass.edu/linguist/GLSA/

IULC Publications http://www.indiana.edu/~iulc/

Kingston Press Ltd.

Linguistic Assoc. of Finland http://www.ling.helsinki.fi/sky/

Linguistic Society of Southern Africa (LSSA) http://www.safest.org.za/bsp

Orientalia et Africana Gothoburgensia http://orient218.orient.gu.se/afrikanska/afrpubl.html

Pacific Linguistics http://pacling.anu.edu.au

U. of Antwerp, Dept of Germanic Languages http://apil-www.uia.ac.be/apil

U. of Arizona Press http://www.uapress.arizona.edu

U. of Huelva http://www.philologia.uhu.es

U. of Marburg & Max Hueber Verlag http://staff-www.uni-marburg.de/~introlin/

Utrecht Institute of Linguistics http://www-uilots.let.uu.nl/

Vaxjo: Acta Wexionesia

Virittaja Aikakauslehti http://www.helsinki.fi/jarj/kks/virittaja.html
Wednesday, May 17, 2000