Agreement Beyond Phi
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From Linguistic Inquiry Monographs

Agreement Beyond Phi

By Shigeru Miyagawa

An argument that agreement and agreementless languages are unified under an expanded view of grammatical features including both phi-features and certain discourse configurational features.

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Summary

An argument that agreement and agreementless languages are unified under an expanded view of grammatical features including both phi-features and certain discourse configurational features.

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.

Hardcover

$85.00 X ISBN: 9780262035880 246 pp. | 9 in x 6 in

Paperback

$35.00 S ISBN: 9780262533324 246 pp. | 9 in x 6 in

Endorsements

  • 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