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Summary Details

Query:   Grammatical Complexity, Part I
Author:  Kaius Sinnemäki
Submitter Email:  click here to access email
Linguistic LingField(s):   Morphology

Summary:   Regarding the query http://linguist.emich.edu/issues/15/15-3317.html and https://mailman.rice.edu/pipermail/funknet/2004-November/003027.html. I recently posted a query on grammatical complexity on LINGUIST-list and FUNKNET in order to find any relevant research already being conducted on the subject. First, I would like to thank everyone who responded (Apologies for any possible omission. In addition to these, there were other requests to pass on the summary.): Daniel L. Everett Jan Rijkhoff Tom Giv?n David A. Havas Miriam Meyerhoff Doug Whalen Sheri Wells Jensen Gertraud Fenk-Oczlon Patrick Juola Heres the summary of the comments and references I received. Dan Everett suggested his recently submitted paper Cultural Constraints on Grammar in Piraha, which is available on his website. Jan Rijkhoff suggested Wouter Kusters recent dissertation and the latest issue of Linguistic Typology (8-3, 2004), both very relevant. (Kusters, Wouter. 2003. Linguistic complexity. Utrecht: LOT, Leiden.) Tom Givon noted that all languages have roughly-equivalent expressive powers but that some languages are typologically less likely to employ embedded clauses. He suggested several chapters of his Syntax vol. II (2001, Benjamins) for further reading on serial verbs, complementation, clause union, relative clauses and chaining. Doug Whalen forwarded the query on phonological complexity that he summarized on LINGUIST in February 2004 (http://linguistlist.org/issues/15/15-430.html). Hes also working on how brain activation might correlate with complexity. Shari Wells Jensen offered her dissertation on cross linguistic speech errors, which suggest equal complexity from functional point of view: http://personal.bgsu.edu/~swellsj/diss/index.html Continued: Please see Grammatical Complexity, Part II, which appears as the second item in this LINGUIST List issue, for a continuation of this summary.

LL Issue: 15.3529
Date Posted: 19-Dec-2004
Original Query: Read original query


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