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Syntactic Structures (2nd Edition) [Hardcover]

By Noam Chomsky (Author) & David W. Lightfoot (Preface by)
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Item description for Syntactic Structures (2nd Edition) by Noam Chomsky & David W. Lightfoot...

Noam Chomsky's book is a serious attempt to construct within the tradition of scientific theory-construction a comprehensive theory of language which may be understood in the same sense that a chemical, biological theory is understood by experts in those fields.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   117
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.3" Width: 6.3" Height: 0.6"
Weight:   0.45 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Dec 31, 2002
Publisher   Walter de Gruyter
Age  18-21
Edition  Revised  
ISBN  3110172798  
ISBN13  9783110172799  

Availability  64 units.
Availability accurate as of Oct 22, 2016 02:08.
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More About Noam Chomsky & David W. Lightfoot

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Noam Chomsky is Institute Professor (Emeritus) in the M.I.T. Department of Linguistics and Philosophy. His work is widely credited with having revolutionized the field of modern linguistics. Chomsky is the author of numerous best-selling political works, including the New York Times bestseller Hegemony or Survival, Failed States, Imperial Ambitions, What We Say Goes, and Hopes and Prospects.

Noam Chomsky currently resides in Lexington, in the state of Massachusetts. Noam Chomsky was born in 1928 and has an academic affiliation as follows - Massachusetts Institute of Technology Massachusetts Institute of Techn.

Noam Chomsky has published or released items in the following series...
  1. American Empire Project
  2. City Lights Open Media
  3. Columbia Themes in Philosophy

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Product Categories

1Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Social Sciences > Linguistics
2Books > Subjects > Reference > Foreign Languages > General
3Books > Subjects > Reference > General
4Books > Subjects > Reference > Words & Language > Grammar
5Books > Subjects > Reference > Words & Language > Linguistics
6Books > Subjects > Reference > Words & Language > Study & Teaching

Reviews - What do customers think about Syntactic Structures (2nd Edition)?

Good Book~  Mar 15, 2008
It is a great book which all linguistic student should read.
Doubtless, Noam Chomsky becomes a well-known intellectual due to his political review. However, pls do not forget he is a linguistic professional at beginning.
I bought this book from this site. Although the price may be a bit higher than other shop, it is a promise of safety.
Linguistics and Psychology  Jan 21, 2008
In this one of many books by Noam Chomsky, linguistics and psychology are intellectually intertwined in a way that makes them approachable for anyone from any academic background.
Bloomfield and Quine Commentary  Sep 28, 2006
Chomsky's assertion of the creativity of sentence production derives, in part, (one must believe) from Emil Post's work in symbol production: given a finite vocabulary and a finite and small set of rules, an infinite number of "sentences" can be created. I recommend a read of Post's more rigorous mathematical treatment on linguistic creativity.

Following Bloomfield, Chomsky, after rejecting the clear inadequacies of left-to-right state machine structures, adopts a transformational approach that imbeds phrase markers. The idea, computational and not entirely new, uses the axiom of replacement, with recursion, to construct and deconstruct, first syntactic words (nouns, verbs, objects, et al.), then phrases, with operators, assuring functional equivalence. In the transformational step, constants are added for plurality, tense, and mood. Later, as in Wittgenstein, context is inserted to normalize speaker and listener, conserving meaning and phonology over use.

The work here, as Bloomfield states, is empirical, a re-engineering of actual languages, complete with special cases (viz., passive voice accommodations). There is more than a hint of work-in-progress, as ideas are conjectured, discarded later (we have learned), cases added, and so on. It would be remarkable if, as Chomsky later asserts, these transformational rules were nicely imbedded a priori in the mind, when the work to describe them is so heuristic.

Nevertheless, with cognitive science and neurology steadily on the march, such speculation may soon seem trivial. It is unthinkable that the infant comes empty to the task of language acquisition. Who could a think otherwise, except, perhaps, a doctrinaire empiricist?

Chomsky, whose primary mission seems to have been to be a success, also lands on the right and self-evident side of behavioralism (it is not so much incorrect as incomplete - which is far worse), and so has read Darwin and Freud as well as Plato.
Right, Back On The Corner  Apr 3, 2004
Chomsky's *Syntactic Structures* is legendary today for its being the founding document in the field of generative grammar; but this is to say that the many theses of this book are poorly understood from a distance. Originally the student of Bloomfieldian Zellig Harris, Chomsky released this work after many years in Cambridge, Mass.; and although the traditional concerns of structuralist linguistics are well-represented in Chomsky's work, here this is through an engagement with the work of Willard van Orman Quine which has to my mind never been fully extracted. Chomsky took Quinean scruples concerning the "theory of meaning" as a guide for syntactic theory, namely as the extent to which an adequate syntax for natural language must "sin" against the strictures of compositionality embodied in formal languages; and although his strategy here has had its fans, the "stepwise" construction of his argument and its import have to my knowledge never been fully addressed.

Beginning with an immensely convincing case against the Markovian logic implicit in cybernetic analyses of communication, Chomsky sketches the extent to which various "rigorizations" of the communicative upshot of utterances (visions of the "speaker-hearer circuit" literally displayed by Saussure) fail to capture the grammatical articulation of sentences, and this in a *theoretically constitutive* way. The fate of each such "fail-safe" demonstrates the extent to which the "story about the story", the speaker's implicit grammar, serves an empirically regulative function (i.e., is palpably part of the observable activity of "reasoned" discourse); and this is presented in a theoretical vocabulary so lean as to have invited further formalization beyond the "core" theory's subsequent refinements by Chomsky and students.

In other words, this is essential reading for anyone trafficking in linguistic "transitions" of any kind: simply reaffirming a hostility to "Enlightenment commonplaces" will not relieve the researcher of the theoretical burdens imposed by the well-nigh-unavoidable desiderata of theoretical adequacy both explicit and implicit here. This is not a "what-if" narrative, concerning an alternate history for linguistic theory: this is just-so stuff which should constrain your understanding of what is already the case, and in no very "normative" way (though individuals primarily concerned with Chomsky's politics can easily absolve themselves of responsibility for linguistic theory by ignoring it). A true classic.

Essential for Linguists  Apr 27, 2000
Although Chomsky later changed his ideas towards linguistics in'Aspects of the Theory of Syntax', but this book is essential in understanding his relation to the Bloomfildean school and is essential for understanding 20'th century linguistics.

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