By Juan Uriagereka
Derivations attracts jointly the most influential paintings of 1 of the world's prime syntactitians, Juan Uriagekera. those essays supply numerous empirical analyses and technical suggestions in the Minimalist software. The e-book persues a naturalistic tackle Minimalism, explicitly connecting numerous linguistic ideas and prerequisites to arguably analogous legislation and conditions in nature.
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Extra resources for Derivations: Exploring the Dynamics of Syntax (Routledge Leadinglinguists)
Of course, this is just one among several possible instantiations of what looks like a very good idea, which makes syntactic representations and their interactions awfully similar, mathematically at least, to what goes on in nature. But if the latter is the case, one need not stop where MP has. Obvious questions remain. What does it mean to have movement, variation, morphology altogether? Why are syntactic objects arranged in terms of merge and its history? What are syntactic features and categories?
For example, any sort of cyclic computation entails that the class of alternative derivations at any given point is very small, thus not a mathematical explosion. In the very example I provided, I insisted on the fact that entropy is computed locally, within a derivational horizon established by lexical choice. If 38 CONCEPTUAL MATTERS you get a new substantive item from the lexicon, there goes the computation of entropy; there is, thus, no computational blow-up. Thus the worry about complexity, in and of itself, seems superﬂuous.
Was that not the best theory with the fewest assumptions, with reasonable interacting theoretical elements that were there (to either make use of, or else explain away)? Yet MP explicitly denies us the possibility of moving “back and forth” to satisfy the ECP (the central notion last resort, via the various versions of greed explored in the book, impedes any movement that is not self-serving). Why is this so? Because that is how we are going to design things from now on. Of course, it is not the best theory, if only because it has to add a stipulation to the set of axioms (greed), no matter how many fancy terms we give it.