The Philosophy of Generative Linguistics

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2011-04-15
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
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Peter Ludlow presents the first book on the philosophy of generative linguistics, including both Chomsky>'s government and binding theory and his minimalist program. Ludlow explains the motivation of the generative framework, describes its basic mechanisms, and then addresses some of the many interesting philosophical questions and puzzles that arise once we adopt the general theoretical approach. He focuses on what he takes to be the most basicphilosophical issues DSabout the ontology of linguistics, about the nature of data, about language/world relations, and about best theory criteria. These are of broad philosophical interest, from epistemology to ethics: Ludlow hopes to bring the philosophy of linguistics to a wider philosophical audience and show thatwe have many shared philosophical questions. Similarly, he aims to set out the philosophical issues in such a way as to engage readers from linguistics, and to encourage interaction between the two disciplines on foundational issues.

Author Biography

Peter Ludlow is Professor of Philosophy at Northwestern University. He taught at the State University of New York at Stony Brook, the University of Michigan, and the University of Toronto before joining Northwestern

Table of Contents

Prefacep. ix
Acknowledgmentsp. xi
List of Abbreviationsp. xiii
Introductionp. xv
Linguistic Preliminariesp. 1
Transformational Grammar from ST to ESTp. 1
Government and Binding Theoryp. 26
The Principles and Parameters Frameworkp. 31
The Minimalist Programp. 36
The Ontology of Generative Linguisticsp. 44
E-Language, I-Language, ┐-Languagep. 44
Having Linguistic Rules and Knowing Linguistic Factsp. 48
Levels of Explanation in the Theory of Grammarp. 55
Abstracts and Non-isomorphic Representationp. 55
Types and Tokensp. 58
Derivation vs. Representationp. 60
Data, Intuitions, Judgmentsp. 64
Linguistic Phenomena, Linguistic Data, Linguistic Theoryp. 64
Linguistic Intuitions are Linguistic Judgmentsp. 69
Linguistic Judgments are Reliable (enough)p. 71
Linguistic Judgments as Scientific Experimentsp. 77
On the Alleged Priority of the Datap. 82
A Role for Normative Rule Governance?p. 90
Worries about Rules and Representationsp. 101
Quinean Indeterminacy Argumentsp. 102
Kripke/Wittgenstein Concerns about Rulesp. 105
Externalism about Syntax?p. 117
Referential Semantics for Narrow ┐-Languagesp. 129
The Compatibility of Referential Semantics and Narrow ┐-Languagesp. 129
Chomsky's Incompatibilist Argumentsp. 131
The ˘Bite the Bullet÷ Strategy and Chomsky's Responsep. 134
The Compatibilist Bites Backp. 137
The Prospects for a Non-referential Semanticsp. 142
Best Theory Criteria and Methodological Minimalismp. 152
Simplicity Criteriap. 152
Formal Rigorp. 162
Minimal Effort and Optimal Switching Pointsp. 170
Appendix: Interviewp. 174
Bibliographyp. 192
Index of Namesp. 205
Index of Termsp. 208
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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