Syntactic Effects of Conjunctivist Semantics

Unifying movement and adjunction

Tim Hunter | Yale University
ISBN 9789027255532 | EUR 95.00 | USD 143.00
ISBN 9789027287328 | EUR 95.00 | USD 143.00
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This book explores the syntactic and semantic properties of movement and adjunction in natural language. A precise formulation of minimalist syntax is proposed, guided by an independently motivated hypothesis about the composition of neo-Davidsonian logical forms, in which there is no atomic movement operation and no atomic adjunction operation. The terms 'movement' and 'adjunction' serve only as convenient labels for certain combinations of other, primitive operations, and as a result the system derives non-trivial predictions about how movement and adjunction should interact; in particular, it yields natural explanatory accounts of the constituency of adjunction structures, the possibility of counter-cyclic attachment, and the prohibitions on extraction from adjoined domains (adjunct islands) and from moved domains (freezing effects). This work serves as a case study in deriving explanations for syntactic patterns from a restrictive theory of semantic composition, and in using an explicit grammatical framework to inform rigourous minimalist theorising.
[Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today, 170] 2011.  xi, 185 pp.
Publishing status: Available
Table of Contents
“Taking a fresh look at argument-adjunct asymmetries, Hunter identifies similarities between the syntactic and semantic distinctions of adjuncts and provides a simple mechanism that explains both at once. This well-written book takes an important step towards a simpler perspective on a vast array of facts.”
“In this impressive study, Hunter argues that movement and adjunction are complex computational operations that share simpler components. His formally explicit version of this intriguing idea unifies a range of otherwise disparate facts concerning the relations among the syntax and semantics of verbs, arguments, and adjuncts. Hunter's analyses are clear, measured, and illuminating.”
“In spite of the centrality of recursion in syntax, the structural character of one of its major exponents, adjunction, has remained a mystery. Previous work has taken adjunction to be a thing apart, a configuration with its own distinctive properties and derivational source. Yet, this view leaves unexplained why adjunction may iterate and why it yields structures that are less tightly integrated and constitute islands for extraction. In Syntactic Effects of Conjunctivist Semantics: Unifying Movement and Adjunction, Tim Hunter tackles this mystery. Hunter provides a mathematically precise reformulation of the fundamental derivational operations of grammar, which allows him to draw an exciting connection between the units of derivation and the constaints imposed by neo-Davidsonian semantic interpretation. Hunter then demonstrates how the previously basic operations of internal merge, external merge, and adjunction, together with their characteristic properties, arise from the composition of the more basic primitives he advocates. This is work of the first caliber; it is lucidly written, empirically and theoretically rich, and, by rethinking the foundations of grammar, makes progress on a long-standing puzzle.”
Cited by

Cited by 4 other publications

Hunter, Tim
2015. Deconstructing Merge and Move to Make Room for Adjunction. Syntax 18:3  pp. 266 ff. DOI logo
Hunter, Tim & Robert Frank
2014. Eliminating Rightward Movement: Extraposition as Flexible Linearization of Adjuncts. Linguistic Inquiry 45:2  pp. 227 ff. DOI logo
Pan, Victor Junnan & Yuqiao Du
2024. A multi-dimensional derivation model under the free-MERGE system: labor division between syntax and the C-I interface. The Linguistic Review 41:1  pp. 85 ff. DOI logo
Thiersch, Craig
2017. Remnant Movement. In The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Syntax, Second Edition,  pp. 1 ff. DOI logo

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Main BIC Subject

CFK: Grammar, syntax

Main BISAC Subject

LAN009000: LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / General
ONIX Metadata
ONIX 2.1
ONIX 3.0
U.S. Library of Congress Control Number:  2010050510 | Marc record