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By John A. Hawkins

During this significant new booklet, John A. Hawkins offers a brand new concept of linear ordering in syntax. He argues that processing offers an easy, useful reason for syntactic principles of ordering, in addition to for the choice between ordering variations in languages and constructions during which version is feasible. Insights from generative syntax, typological experiences of language universals, and psycholinguistic reports of language processing are mixed to teach that there's a profound correspondence among functionality and grammar.

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Extra info for A Performance Theory of Order and Constituency

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It predicts the implicational structuring of universal hierarchies such as Keenan and Comrie's (1977) hierarchy for relativization, as well as many cross-linguistic frequencies for different structural options. This approach is compatible with the fact that a difficult structure, such as the center embedding of S, may sometimes be attested. But it is no longer a counter-example to some absolute prohibition. g. 3 The approach of the present book 15 It is plausible to assume further that languages will strive for some overall balance in their selection of more and less complex options from different grammatical domains.

P before NP will receive a similar explanation. The directionality of rule-governed rearrangements from a basic order is also predicted by Early Immediate Constituents: extraposition-type rules will move an S to the right in a head-initial language, and to the left (in general) within a head-final language. Thirdly, many mother-daughter relations in phrase structure appear to be driven by processing. If an abstract constituent structure representation is to be clearly recognized and derived from a rapid linear parse string, this imposes certain constraints.

Innate UG) in its evolution, I wish to sound a cautionary note. This kind of scenario is not impossible, of course, but since processing mechanisms must also be innately determined ultimately, and since they need to be assumed anyway in order to explain how language is performed, why should performance considerations in effect be duplicated from one innate "module" into another, The approach of the present book 13 namely the innate grammar? It is simpler and more economical to assume that the innate processor constrains options that are left open by the innate grammar, whose ultimate causation lies elsewhere.

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