This is a self-contained introduction to the Minimalist Program for linguistic
theory, the boldest and most radical version of Noam Chomsky's naturalistic
approach to language. Cedric Boeckx examines its foundations, explains its
underlying philosophy, exemplifies its methods, and considers the
significance of its empirical results.
He explores the roots and antecedents of the Program and shows how its
methodologies parallel those of sciences such as physics and biology. He
disentangles and clarifies current debates and issues around the nature of
minimalist research in linguistics and shows how the aims and ambitions of
the Minimalist Program lie at the centre of the enterprise to understand how
the human language faculty operates in the mind and is manifested in the
world's languages. The book contains a glossary of key concepts, each one
illustrated with relevant examples drawn from a variety of languages.