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Hardcover | $85.00 X | £70.95 | 248 pp. | 6 x 9 in | March 2017 | ISBN: 9780262035880
Paperback | $35.00 Short | £27.95 | 248 pp. | 6 x 9 in | March 2017 | ISBN: 9780262533324
eBook | $24.00 Short | March 2017 | ISBN: 9780262338622
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Agreement Beyond Phi


Much attention in theoretical linguistics in the generative and Minimalist traditions is concerned with issues directly or indirectly related to movement. The EPP (extended projection principle), introduced by Chomsky in 1981, appeared to coincide with morphological agreement, and agreement came to play a central role as the driver of movement and other narrow-syntax operations. In this book, Shigeru Miyagawa continues his investigation into a computational equivalent for agreement in agreementless languages such as Japanese.

Miyagawa extends his theory of Strong Uniformity, introduced in his earlier book, Why Agree? Why Move? Unifying Agreement-Based and Discourse-Configurational Languages (MIT Press). He argues that agreement and agreementless languages are unified under an expanded view of grammatical features including both phi-features and discourse configurational features of topic and focus. He looks at various combinations of these two grammatical features across a number of languages and phenomena, including allocutive agreement, root phenomena, topicalization, “why” questions, and case alternation.

About the Author

Shigeru Miyagawa is Professor of Linguistics and Kochi-Manjiro Professor of Japanese Language and Culture at MIT. He is the author of Why Agree? Why Move? Unifying Agreement-Based and Discourse-Configurational Languages (MIT Press).


This book is an enrichment of formal syntax: the author widens the empirical domain under examination by including not only data from lesser-known languages but also phenomena that have often been set aside as being outside of the domain of syntax. Among other things, as part of a tradition initiated by Ann Banfield and J. R. Ross and recently updated by Virginia Hill, Miyagawa opens up formal syntax to include discourse-related phenomena and thus contributes to the building of a new research agenda.
Liliane Haegeman, Full Professor, Department of Linguistics, Ghent University; author of Adverbial Clauses, Main Clause Phenomena, and the Composition of the Left Periphery
This book provides an impressive extension of Strong Uniformity: in ‘agreementless’ languages, principles of agreement apply to discourse configurational δ-features as they do to Φ-features in agreement languages. Analyzing languages as varied as Basque, Chinese, Japanese, Jingpo, and Newari, Shigeru Miyagawa makes an elegant and compelling case for this exciting perspective.
Johan Rooryck, Professor of French Linguistics, Leiden University; coauthor of Dissolving Binding Theory