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Language Planning as a Sociolinguistic Experiment

By: Ernst Jahr

Provides richly detailed insight into the uniqueness of the Norwegian language development. Marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of the Norwegian nation following centuries of Danish rule


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Acquiring Phonology: A Cross-Generational Case-Study

By Neil Smith

The study also highlights the constructs of current linguistic theory, arguing for distinctive features and the notion 'onset' and against some of the claims of Optimality Theory and Usage-based accounts.


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Language Production and Interpretation: Linguistics meets Cognition

By Henk Zeevat

The importance of Henk Zeevat's new monograph cannot be overstated. [...] I recommend it to anyone who combines interests in language, logic, and computation [...]. David Beaver, University of Texas at Austin


Book Information

   
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Title: Defective Paradigms
Subtitle: Missing Forms and What They Tell Us
Edited By: GrevilleG.Corbett
Series Title: Proceedings of the British Academy
Description:

An important design feature of language is the use of productive patterns
in inflection. In English, we have pairs such as 'enjoy' ~ 'enjoyed',
'agree' ~ 'agreed', and many others. On the basis of this productive
pattern, if we meet a new verb 'transduce' we know that there will be the
form 'transduced'. Even if the pattern is not fully regular, there will be
a form available, as in 'understand' ~ 'understood'. Surprisingly, this
principle is sometimes violated, a phenomenon known as defectiveness, which
means there is a gap in a word's set of forms: for example, given the verb
'forego', many if not most people are unwilling to produce a past tense.

Although such gaps have been known to us since the days of Classical
grammarians, they remain poorly understood. Defectiveness contradicts basic
assumptions about the way inflectional rules operate, because it seems to
require that speakers know that for certain words, not only should one not
employ the expected rule, one should not employ any rule at all. This is a
serious problem, since it is probably safe to say that all reigning models
of grammar were designed as if defectiveness did not exist, and would lose
a considerable amount of their elegance if it were properly factored in.

This volume addressed these issues from a number of analytical approaches -
historical, statistical and theoretical - and by using studies from a range
of languages.

Publication Year: 2010
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Review: Read the review
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Syntax
Issue: All announcements sent out by The LINGUIST List are emailed to our subscribers and archived with the Library of Congress.
Click here to see the original emailed issue.

Versions:
Format: Hardback
ISBN: 0197264603
ISBN-13: 9780197264607
Pages: 200
Prices: U.S.$ 75.00