Change Chance And Optimality

Author: April McMahon
Editor: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191583537
File Size: 53,95 MB
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This book is about how languages change. It is also a devastating critique of a widespread linguistic orthodoxy. April McMahon argues that to provide a convincing explanation of linguistic change the roles of history and contingency must be accommodated in linguistic theory. She also shows that theoretical work in related disciplines can be used to assess the value of such theories. Optimality Theory, or OT as it is usually called, dominates contemporary phonology, especially in the USA, and is becoming increasingly influential in syntax and language acquisition. Having set out its basis principles, Professor McMahon assesses their explanatory power in analysing language change and its residues in current phonological systems. Using cross-linguistic data, and drawing comparisons with other theories inside and outside linguistics, she shows that OT is incapable of accounting for language change, without the addition of rules and an appreciation of chance and historical contingency that would then undermine its theoretical underpinnings. OT relies on innateness and needs to discuss the origins of allegedly genetically-specified features. The author considers the nature and evolution of the human language capacity, and demonstrates a profound mismatch between the predictions of evolutionary biology and the claims for innateness made in OT.
Change, Chance, and Optimality
Language: en
Pages: 212
Authors: April McMahon
Categories: Language Arts & Disciplines
Type: BOOK - Published: 2000-09-07 - Publisher: OUP Oxford

This book is about how languages change. It is also a devastating critique of a widespread linguistic orthodoxy. April McMahon argues that to provide a convincing explanation of linguistic change the roles of history and contingency must be accommodated in linguistic theory. She also shows that theoretical work in related
Change, Chance, and Optimality
Language: en
Pages: 201
Authors: April M. S. McMahon
Categories: Language Arts & Disciplines
Type: BOOK - Published: 2000 - Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand

This book is about how languages change. It is also a devastating critique of a widespread linguistic orthodoxy. April McMahon argues that to provide a convincing explanation of linguistic change the roles of history and contingency must be accommodated in linguistic theory. She also showsthat theoretical work in related disciplines
Optimality Theory and Language Change
Language: en
Pages: 463
Authors: D.E. Holt
Categories: Language Arts & Disciplines
Type: BOOK - Published: 2012-12-06 - Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

This work discusses many optimization and linguistic issues in great detail. It treats the history of a variety of languages, including English, French, Germanic, Galician/ Portuguese, Latin, Russian, and Spanish and shows that the application of Optimality Theory allows for innovative and improved analyses. It contains a complete bibliography on
Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics
Language: en
Pages: 9000
Authors: D.E. Holt
Categories: Language Arts & Disciplines
Type: BOOK - Published: 2005-11-24 - Publisher: Elsevier

The first edition of ELL (1993, Ron Asher, Editor) was hailed as "the field's standard reference work for a generation". Now the all-new second edition matches ELL's comprehensiveness and high quality, expanded for a new generation, while being the first encyclopedia to really exploit the multimedia potential of linguistics. *
Linguistic Universals and Language Change
Language: en
Pages: 339
Authors: Jeff Good
Categories: Language Arts & Disciplines
Type: BOOK - Published: 2008-01-24 - Publisher: Oxford University Press

In this book leading scholars examine and assess rival explanations for linguistic universals and the effectiveness of different models of language change. They illustrate their arguments with a very wide range of reference to the world's languages.