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"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more

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Book Information


Title: Asymmetry in Grammar
Subtitle: Volume 2: Morphology, phonology, acquisition
Edited By: Anna Maria Di Sciullo
URL: http://www.benjamins.nl/cgi-bin/t_bookview.cgi?bookid=LA_58
Series Title: Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today 58

Asymmetry in Grammar: Morphology, Phonology and Acquisition presents evidence that asymmetry, as a property of linguistic relations, is salient in grammar. The papers in morphology bring further evidence for the centrality of asymmetry in word-structure. It is shown that asymmetry is part of the internal structure of functional constructs such as determiners and complementizers, as it is the case for lexical constructs. Further evidence is presented for the asymmetry of prefixes in verb structure. A typology of formal objects based on the distinction between maximal and minimal categories is formulated. It is proposed that Formal Complexity drives the change from synthetic to analytic expressions. The papers in phonology point to the fact that asymmetry is part of that linguistic dimension in terms of processes that eliminates symmetric relations, in terms of head-dependency relations, in terms of relative scope of the distinctive features in any inventory, in terms of universal principles in combination with certain language specific choices. Moreover, the papers on acquisition bring to fore experimental data that point to the same direction. The asymmetry of grammatical relations provides the form of the initial state of language that enables the child to cope with the poverty of the stimulus.

The collection includes papers in morphology by Anna Maria Di Sciullo, Angela Ralli, Réjean Canac-Marquis, Abdelkader Fassi Fehri, papers in phonology by Eric Raimy, Harry van der Hulst and Nancy Ritter, Glyne Piggott, Charles Reiss, Elan Dresher, and papers in acquisition from Maria Louisa Rivero and Magdalena Goledzinowska, and David Lebeaux.

Table of contents

Asymmetry in grammar: Morphology, phonology, acquisition
Anna Maria Di Sciullo 1–8
Morphological relations in asymmetry theory
Anna Maria Di Sciullo 9–36
Prefixation vs. compounding
Angela Ralli 37–63
Asymmetry, syntactic objects and the Mirror Geralization
Réjean Canac-Marquis 65–94
Synthetic/analytic asymmetries in voice and temporal patterns
Abdelkader Fassi Fehri 95–128
Asymmetry and linearization in phonology
Eric Raimy 129–146
Levels, constraints and heads
Harry van der Hulst and Nancy A. Ritter 147–188
Obstruent neutrality in nasal harmony
G.L. Piggott 189–214
Towards a theory of fundamental phonological relations
Charles Reiss 215–238
Contrast and asymmetries in inventories
B. Elan Dresher 239–257
The Acquisition of constructions with reflexive clitics in Polish
María Luisa Rivero and Magdalena Goledzinowska 259–283
A subgrammar approach to language acquisition
David Lebeaux 285–300
Index 301–306

Publication Year: 2003
Publisher: John Benjamins
Review: Read the review
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Morphology
Language Acquisition
Generative Linguistics
Subject Language(s): Polish
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.

Format: Hardback
ISBN: 9027227799
ISBN-13: N/A
Pages: vi, 309 pp.
Prices: EUR 99.00
Format: Hardback
ISBN: 1588113078
ISBN-13: 9781588113078
Pages: vi, 309 pp.
Prices: U.S. $ 162