Publishing Partner: Cambridge University Press CUP Extra Wiley-Blackwell Publisher Login
amazon logo
More Info


New from Oxford University Press!

ad

Language Planning as a Sociolinguistic Experiment

By: Ernst Jahr

Provides richly detailed insight into the uniqueness of the Norwegian language development. Marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of the Norwegian nation following centuries of Danish rule


New from Cambridge University Press!

ad

Acquiring Phonology: A Cross-Generational Case-Study

By Neil Smith

The study also highlights the constructs of current linguistic theory, arguing for distinctive features and the notion 'onset' and against some of the claims of Optimality Theory and Usage-based accounts.


New from Brill!

ad

Language Production and Interpretation: Linguistics meets Cognition

By Henk Zeevat

The importance of Henk Zeevat's new monograph cannot be overstated. [...] I recommend it to anyone who combines interests in language, logic, and computation [...]. David Beaver, University of Texas at Austin


Book Information

   
Sun Image

Title: Subject Positions and Interfaces: The Case of European Portuguese
URL: http://www.degruyter.de/rs/bookSingle.cfm?id=IS-3110181126-1&l=E
Series Title: Studies in Generative Grammar 73
Description:

European Portuguese, like other Romance languages, displays a great amount of word order variation. Out of the six logically possible permutations between Subject, Verb and Complement in a transitive sentence, five are possible: SVO, VSO, VOS, OVS and OSV.

The primary goal of this book is to provide an analysis of the several positions where the subject may surface in European Portuguese. Departing from an architecture of the clause as sketched in early minimalist work, containing two subject-related functional categories above VP (AgrP and
TP), it is shown that the subject may surface in all potential landing sites: Spec,AgrP, Spec,TP and Spec,VP. Moreover, just like any other argument of the clause, it is claimed that subjects also have the possibility of surfacing in a left-dislocated position, arguably adjoining to the clause's left periphery.

It is shown that there is no free variation. Each of these positions may be occupied by the subject, only if two requirements are met: i) the position is made available by syntax; ii) the position does not violate any interface condition.

In other words, the following model is argued for: syntax generates legitimate outputs. At the interface levels, each output may be selected or filtred out, according to requirements of the interface.

The picture emerging from the proposal made in this book is the following: syntax proper does not need to refer to conditions best placed at the interface. All that is needed from syntax is that it generates an array of well-formed outputs. Such outputs may be evaluated a posteriori by each of the interfaces. If they meet requirements of the interface, they are selected as legitimate. If, on the contrary, some interface condition is violated, they are ruled out. Under this approach, three independent results are derived: i) an explanation is found for the patterns of word order variation; ii) syntax proper may be reduced to its own tools, not having to manipulate semantic, discourse or prosodic variables; iii) the intuition that European Portuguese is an SVO language is derived: this word order corresponds to the one in which the subject occupies the only specifier position in which the other interfaces play no role.

João Costa is Assistent Professor of Linguistics at the University of
Lisbon, Portugal.

TO ORDER, PLEASE CONTACT

SFG Servicecenter-Fachverlage
Postfach 4343
72774 Reutlingen, Germany
Fax: +49 (0)7071 - 93 53 - 33
E-mail: deGruyter@s-f-g.com


For USA, Canada, Mexico:

Walter de Gruyter, Inc.
PO Box 960
Herndon, VA 20172-0960
Tel.: +1 (703) 661 1589
Tel. Toll-free +1 (800) 208 8144
Fax: +1 (703) 661 1501 e-mail: degruytermail@presswarehouse.com

Publication Year: 2004
Publisher: De Gruyter Mouton
Review: Read the review
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Semantics
Syntax
Subject Language(s): Portuguese
Issue: All announcements sent out by The LINGUIST List are emailed to our subscribers and archived with the Library of Congress.
Click here to see the original emailed issue.

Versions:
Format: Hardback
ISBN: 3110181126
ISBN-13: N/A
Pages: viii, 212
Prices: EuropeEURO 98.00