LINGUIST List 23.5391

Thu Dec 20 2012

Books: Rich Languages From Poor Inputs: Piattelli-Palmarini, Berwick (Eds)

Editor for this issue: Rebekah McClure <>

Date: 12-Dec-2012
From: Helen Boyd <>
Subject: Rich Languages From Poor Inputs: Piattelli-Palmarini, Berwick (Eds)
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Title: Rich Languages From Poor InputsPublication Year: 2012Publisher: Oxford University Press

Book URL:

Editor: Massimo Piattelli-PalmariniEditor: Robert C. Berwick

Hardback: ISBN: 9780199590339 Pages: 336 Price: U.K. £ 60.00


This book addresses one of the most famous and controversial arguments in thestudy of language and mind, the Poverty of the Stimulus. Presented by Chomskyin 1968, the argument holds that children do not receive enough evidence toinfer the existence of core aspects of language, such as the dependence oflinguistic rules on hierarchical phrase structure. The argument strikesagainst empiricist accounts of language acquisition and supports theconclusion that knowledge of some aspects of grammar must be innate. In thefirst part of Rich Grammars from Poor Inputs, contributors consider thegeneral issues around the POS argument, review the empirical data, and offernew and plausible explanations. This is followed by a discussion of the theprocesses of language acquisition, and observed 'gaps' between adult and childgrammar, concentrating on the late spontaneous acquisition by children of somekey syntactic principles, basically, though not exclusively, between the agesof 5 to 9. Part 3 widens the horizon beyond language acquisition in the narrowsense, examining the natural development of reading and writing and of thechild's growing sensitivity for the fine arts.

Linguistic Field(s): Language Acquisition Linguistic Theories Psycholinguistics

Written In: English (eng)

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-------------------------- Major Supporters --------------------------


Cambridge Scholars Publishing

Cambridge University Press

Cascadilla Press

Bloomsbury Publishing (formerly The Continuum International Publishing Group)

De Gruyter Mouton

Edinburgh University Press

Elsevier Ltd

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Equinox Publishing Ltd

European Language Resources Association - ELRA

Georgetown University Press

Hodder Education

John Benjamins

Lincom GmbH

MIT Press

Morgan & Claypool Publishers

Multilingual Matters

Narr Francke Attempto Verlag GmbH + Co. KG

Oxford University Press

Palgrave Macmillan

Peter Lang AG


Routledge (Taylor and Francis)


University of Toronto Press


---------------------- Other Supporting Publishers ----------------------

Association of Editors of the Journal of Portuguese Linguistics

International Pragmatics Assoc.

Netherlands Graduate School of Linguistics / Landelijke - LOT

SIL International

University of Nebraska Press

Utrecht institute of Linguistics

Page Updated: 20-Dec-2012