Phases and variation: Exploring the second factor of the faculty of language

Ángel J. Gallego*

*Autor corresponent d’aquest treball

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This paper investigates the status of linguistic variation within Minimalism, providing a phase-based account of some parametric asymmetries within Western Romance languages. The discussion focuses on the observation that parametric (i.e. 2 nd factor) concerns are typically ignored by minimalist theorizing, given the programmatic interest in the so-called 3 rd factor (see Chomsky 2005), the only one dealing with interface and optimal design matters. I review the basics of Phase Theory (see Chomsky 2000 and subsequent work), paying special attention to the internal structure of phases. I compare this type of approach to cartographic ones, pointing out some empirical and conceptual shortcomings of the latter, and provide evidence fromWestern Romance that the same type of linguistic variation can be found in all phasal contexts (namely, CP, v*P, andDP), in a parallel fashion, within a given language, a fact I take to argue that variation cannot be captured by simply postulating some additional (set of) head(s). In line with Uriagereka (2002b; 2008), I pursue the thesis that linguistic variation associated with pragmatic (or discourse-oriented) data is better regarded as a phenomenon (not a specific projection), triggered by the morphological properties of the relevant languages.
Idioma originalEnglish
Títol de la publicacióAlternatives to Cartography
EditorsJeroen van Craenenbroeck
EditorDe Gruyter Mouton
Nombre de pàgines44
ISBN (electrònic)9783110217124
ISBN (imprès)9783110206036
Estat de la publicacióPublicada - 10 de des. 2009

Sèrie de publicacions

NomStudies in Generative Grammar [SGG]
EditorDe Gruyter Mouton
ISSN (imprès)0167-4331


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