LINGUIST List 15.2945

Mon Oct 18 2004

Books: Semantics/Syntax/Portuguese: Costa

Editor for this issue: Megan Zdrojkowski <meganlinguistlist.org>


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        1.    Julia Ulrich, Subject Positions and Interfaces: The Case of European Portuguese: Costa



Message 1: Subject Positions and Interfaces: The Case of European
Portuguese: Costa

Date: 11-Oct-2004
From: Julia Ulrich <julia.ulrichdegruyter.com>
Subject: Subject Positions and Interfaces: The Case of European
Portuguese: Costa


Title: Subject Positions and Interfaces: The Case of European Portuguese 
 Series Title: Studies in Generative Grammar 73  
 
 Publication Year: 2004 
 Publisher: Mouton de Gruyter
     http://www.mouton-publishers.com
 
 
 Book URL: http://www.degruyter.de/rs/bookSingle.cfm?id=IS-3110181126-1&l=E ;
 
 
 Author: João Costa, University of Lisbon, Portugal  
 
 Hardback: ISBN: 3110181126 Pages: viii, 212 Price: Europe EURO 98.00
 
 
 Abstract:
 
 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: deGruyters-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: degruytermailpresswarehouse.com 
 
 
 
 Linguistic Field(s): Semantics
                      Syntax
 
 Subject Language(s): Portuguese (Language Code: POR)
 
 
 Written In: English  (Language Code: ENG)
 
 See this book announcement on our website: 
 http://linguistlist.org/get-book.html?BookID=11852

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International Pragmatics Assoc. http://ipra-www.uia.ac.be/ipra/
Kingston Press Ltd http://www.kingstonpress.com/
Linguistic Assoc. of Finland http://www.ling.helsinki.fi/sky/
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