Phee, Phi, Pho, Phum
A detailed investigation of systems of noun-verb agreement systems from languages near and far, outlining the assumptions and consequences of theories of inflection with respect to a) syntactic configurations b) person, number, and classificational distinctions c) transparent and non-transparent phonological expressions of these features and d) learnability of inflectional systems by the child. Four of the days will be devoted to looking at one language in detail.
There will be only one required reading per day, and (for 4 of the days) a brief "homework" exercise to be discussed the next day.
If possible, please print out and read Harley & Noyer's paper before the 1st class. (harley-noyer.pdf)
- Day 1: Overview of the Issues: Underspecification, Cyclicity, Geometry
Elsewhere, Late Insertion = Trading, Not Just Bundles
Exercise: Tamazight Berber: what are the pieces of inflection?
Reading: Halle 1997 (halle-fission.pdf): note the description of fission; you can skip section 6 on Walpiri
- Day 2: Hebrew Circumfixes
Person to the Left, Lack of Fusion, Non-Redundancy
Exercise: Mam: what features determine the form of the enclitic?
Reading: Vinka 2000 (vinka.pdf): note delinking on geomtry as neutralization.
- Day 3: Algonquinian s'you
Inclusive we, 1 vs 2, Clitics vs Agr
Exercise: Mexican and Uruguayan Spanish: why "se la" and "se los"?
Reading: Harris 1991 (harris91.pdf): note distinction between biological gender, syntactic gender, and noun class.
- Day 4:Spanish themes
Re-linking, Noun classes (Swahili too!)
Exercise: Hindi past vs. future agreement: what is different?
Reading: Schutze 2000 (schutze.pdf): note optionality of agreement with expletive
- Day 5:Ergativity in Hindi
Agreement: Default, Partial, Expletive, Kiddies
On a separate page are (optional) highly relevant readings.