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.
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
The Development of Language: Acquisition, Change And Evolution
Blackwell/Maryland Lectures in Language and Cognit
How and why do languages change over time? Could the way an individual child develops affect aggregate language change? What do the mechanisms of change tell us about the evolution of language in our species? To answer these questions, David Lightfoot looks closely at young children. A child develops a grammar on exposure to some triggering experience. A small perturbation in the trigger may entail a different grammar in the next population of speakers, with dramatic effects.