On the Nature of Grammatical Relations by Alec P. Marantz

By Alec P. Marantz

This publication provides a concept of grammatical kinfolk between sentential components that's a improvement of Chomsky's Government-Binding thought. The cross-linguistic predictive energy of the idea is strangely robust and it really is supported within the exam of quite a lot of languages. in the syntax of a language, grammatical family ensure things like note order, case marking, verb contract, and the probabilities of anaphora (co- and disjoint reference) between nominals. different ways to grammatical family members have thought of them to call sessions of ingredients that proportion clusters of homes, together with such a lot prominently structural positions or case marking, nonetheless others have claimed that grammatical kin are primitives in syntactic idea, yet are comparable primarily to semantic roles. Rejecting those techniques, this monograph develops a conception including at its middle a "projection principle": The syntax of a language is thought to be a (direct) "Projection" of the compositional sematics, and the mechanisms of projection are explicitly spelled out. Chapters disguise the 2 asymmetries and lexical positive factors on which the idea is outfitted; semantic and syntactic info from a wide selection of languages that aid the common applicability and explanatory energy of those asymmetries and contours; gains of passive, antipassive, dative-shift, anticausative, causative, and utilized verb buildings within the worlds' languages defined by means of the speculation; confirmations of the theory's predictions in languages for which replacement methods to grammatical kinfolk fail to supply winning analyses; and, comparability of the book's perception of grammatical family tothose within the GB framework, Montague Grammar, Relational Grammar, and Lexical-Functional Grammar. Alec Marantz is affiliated with the Society of men, Harvard collage. "On the character of Grammatical kinfolk "is a Linguistic Inquiry Monograph.

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It also interacts with other principles to cor­ rectly constrain the possible syntactic effects o f derivational m orphol­ ogy, as argued in chapters 4 through 7. In chapter 8 I argue specifically against D ow ty's (1982a) representation o f subject/nonsubject sem antic asym m etries. In sum m ary, Bresnan is correct in pointing out that the foregoing argum ents alone do not choose a representation for sem antic subject/nonsubject asym m etries, but this point is o f little im portance. L ev els o f S y n ta c tic A n aly sis 29 As B resnan herself notes, my notation correctly predicts the asym ­ m etries; this m uch is sufficient at this point in the presentation of the theory.

Bresnan 1982a, 350-351) B resnan’s exam ples fail to support h er point on a num ber of grounds. F irst, note that the free argum ent in The ro o f caved in on N P is not the object of the verb. Principles yet to be described in detail make it per­ fectly plausible that when a sentence lacks a syntactic object, the syn­ tactic subject of the sentence may in fact be the logical object of the verb. T here is good evidence that groups of verbs in many languages are syntactically intransitive but take logical o bjects— the unaccusa­ tive verbs of Relational G ram m ar.

M oreover, it simply is not true that “ It is not difficult to find other exam ples which support the sam e conclusion” — the conclusion that there are no subject/object asym m etries in idioms and ranges of predi­ cates. 2. Semantic Roles and the Construction of Predicate-Argument Structures To this point I have been som ew hat loose in my identification of the sem antic roles associated with verbs. The assum ption m otivating the preceding discussion was that each sem antic role assigner may, in prin­ ciple, assign a unique role o r a unique set o f roles.

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