Introduction to Study of Language
Introduction to Study of Language LING 1
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This 11 page Class Notes was uploaded by Deborah Greenholt on Friday September 4, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to LING 1 at University of California - Los Angeles taught by R. Schuh in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 52 views. For similar materials see /class/177857/ling-1-university-of-california-los-angeles in Linguistics at University of California - Los Angeles.
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Date Created: 09/04/15
BASICS OF SYNTAX syntax The way in which words are put together to form phrases and sentences American Heritage Dictionary Universal Grammar The properties that must be part of the language instinct in order to account for the linguistic structures found in the world s languages 0 What a model of syntax cannot be in Universal Grammar 1 A sentence dictionary ie a list of all the sentences of a language why not 2 Word salad ie words grouped randomly 3 A word chain device 2 a finite state or Markov model ie a model whereby a sentence is produced one word at a time with each successive word limiting the choice of what the next word might be see The Language Instinct pp 81 90 eats izard is the onthe9 rock eating ies are lizards eat 0 What a model of syntax must account for in Universal Grammar 1 Word order John showed the manager the shoplifter John showed the shoplifter the manager Throw Momma a kiss from the train but Throw Momma from the train a kiss 2 Hierarchical structure That butcher has smoked ham That butcher has smoked ham the butcher possesses smoked ham the butcher cured ham by smoking it 25 26 Linguistics 1 Schuh 3 Grammatical categories lexical categories ie parts of speech and phrasal categories f Sh fish the fish the fresh fish fish Ei sh from Japan are all Noun Phrases You should eat 16 fresh sh rm Slowl I slowly very slowly much more very Slowly slowly slowly and carefully are all You Should eat much more slowly AdVeI bial Phrases Wy Compare the corresponding questions What should you eat what questions a Noun Phrase How should you eat how questions an Adverbial Phrase Words andor phrases which can be substituted for each other in the same syntactic position belong to the same phrasal category Phrase Structure trees as a model for representing sentence structure S Sentence NP 2 Noun Phrase VP 2 Verb Phrase PP Prepositional Phrase N Noun V Verb Pro 2 Pronoun Adv Adverb Det Determiner ie the a this these that those etc S S s NP VP NP VP Np VP N V liP Det N V NP Pro V llP N Det N Pro Lizards eat ies The lizard ate the y It ate them S S NP VP NP VP I Det N V Ava Det N V NP AdVP I Adv Det N Adv I The lizard lounged peacefully The lizard ate the y greedily Basics of Syntax 27 NP VP A A NP VP Det N PP V Ava A I V 1 Prep NP Adv l Prep NP The lizard on the wall lay still The lizard lay on the wall A triangle indicates that the phrase has additional structure which is not spelled out S S NP VP NP VP VA F V NP PP Det N PP The lizard ate the y in the grass The lizard ate the y in the grass Where did the lizard eat the y Which y did the lizard eat Phrase Structure rules a set of rules of the form X gt Y Z grammatical category X is realized as grammatical category Y followed by grammatical category Z the little Phrase Structure grammar below generates all the trees above and in nitely more S gt NP VP NP gt Det N 1313 2 choose either the top line pro or the bottom line but not both the enclosed phrase is optional ie it may be present or absent VP gt V NP AdVP PP PP gt Prep NP Ava gt Intens Adv Intens intensifier such as very much more etc 28 Linguistics 1 Schuh Meaningful VS grammatical The form of a sentence is independent of its meaning S NP VP Ad P N V Ava Colorless green ideas sleep furiously Dark 0 n water swirled ever so slowly Hopelessly lost explorers searched very frantically Sentences can be Meaningful and grammatical Most sentences we utter we hope Meaningless but grammatical Colorless green ideas sleep furiously The lizard elapsed truth Meaningful but ungrammatical Throw Momma from the train a kiss The balloon big and red Meaningless and ungrammatical Ideas green colorless sleep furiously The lizard truth elapsed 0 The number of possible sentences is infinite and there is no longest possible sentence some ways that an infinite number of sentences can be created are 1 Virtually incalculable number of word combinations In the film Discovering the Human Language George Miller points out that in a sentence of just 10 words if there were just 10 possible words to fill each of the ten slots in the sentence the number of sentences would be 1010 2 Conjunction any sentence can be extended by adding and or or followed by another sentence Washington was the first President and Jefferson followed him and I can add one word or I can add two words or I can add three words or 3 Recursion A syntactic category can contain a category of the same type which can contain a category of the same type which can contain a category of the same type which Sam 3wa 29 NP a Del N MNK Dex N pp Wm W Vaumnnm m mm mwm qucuHywwwwm uquot w y mm m rquot w gv auvh V cm W m VF gt V 1 S A NF VF NF NF VF NF Del N v Del N Pro v Del N Fro x x x x x x x x x The newsweekhes coverthe press who covers the press who 30 Linguistics 1 Schuh The sentence below involves recursion by allowing an S to occur within a VP See if you can figure out how to modify the VP rule above in order to account for this potentially infinitely long sentence I know Iohn said he believed Mary claimed linguists have proved S0 S1 S2 S3 S4 0 Two major ground plans in syntactic systems see notes on Discovering the Human Language p 21 of the APS book 1 Relying on word order to convey meaning 2 Marking grammatical function on the words themselves thus making order of the words less crucial for understanding the overall meaning But most languages have a little of both LANGUAGES RELYING ON WORD ORDER We may talk about languages in terms of the order for Subject Object and Verb The lizard caught afly Subject Verb Object The possible orders of S V and O SOV SVO VSO VOS OVS OSV With only a tiny number of exceptions languages exhibit only the following orders SOV Turkish Japanese Korean Persian Hindi Georgian Eskimo etc SVO English French Swahili Hausa Bole Yoruba Thai Vietnamese etc VSO Tagalog Irish Berber Classical Arabic Biblical Hebrew etc Of these SOV is the most common Note that of the 6 possible orders for S O and V these are the three which put the subject before object in the sentence SOV Korean Tomapaymi phalilul capassta The lizard caught a y S O V SVO Bole Gare yuwu S V O VSO Tagalog Nakahuli ang butiki ng langaw V S 0 NOTE These orderings refer to the basic order of neutral declarative sentences Many languages use different order for questions emphatic constructions and other special meanings Basics of Syntax 31 Correlations of ordering of other elements in consistent languages of the three main word order types SOV SVO VSO 1 verb modifiers precede verb follow verb 2 r r 01 quot39 r r I I prepositions 3 possessive phrases possessor precedes possessor follows determiner 4 adjective precede noun follow noun numeral 5 relative clauses precede noun follow noun 6 order of NP elements DET NUM ADJ N N ADJ NUM DET 0 Why do such correlations exist One answer desire to be CONSISTENT in placement of the Head of a Phrase within its phrase Head of a Phrase The principal word of a phrase ie the word from which a phrase type derives its name the head of a VP is the Verb the head of a NP is the Noun the head of a PP is a P r 39 39 or P 39 39 J J39 on the type of PP a language has Head Final languages Head Initial languages VP 80 S 0 S 0 PP NP NP NP Modifiers Modifiers SEE NEXT PAGE FOR EXAMPLES 32 EXAMPLES Linguistics 1 Schuh l 2 SOV SVO VSO Tomapaymi pawi nwuwessta S rock on V Gare gandu gusho S V aton rock Humiga ang butiki E bato V S on rock The lizard lay on the rock The phrase on the rock shows both the position of a modifier of the verbiwhere did the lizard lieiand whether the language uses a postposition or a preposition shown in boxes SOV SVO VSO tomapaymuy kkoli lizard s tail pata gare tail lizard buntot ng butiki tail of lizard lizard s tail SOV SVO VSO ce tomapaym khun tomapaym twu tomapaym gare arna garen siri gare bolou butiking malaki butiking iyon but dalawang butiki that lizard big lizard two lizards SOV SVO VSO phalilul capuh tomapaym yobj caught that lizard gare la yuwu lizard which caught y ang butiking nakahuli ng langaw M ye the SVO VSO 1 twumali the lizard that caught the y the lizard which caught the y khun tomapaym these twoclassif big lizard garen asse bolou maine lizard big two these itong dalawang malaking butiki these two big lizards these two big lizards Note that English and Tagalog are not consistent in the order of elements in 6 That is an SVO language English and a VSO language Tagalog would be expected to have the order NOUN ADJ NUM DET whereas both English and Tagalog have the opposite order ie the one expected for SOV languages In fact few if any languages are entirely consistent in their order types This is one of the facts which makes X bar Theory complicated Why Basics of Syntax 33 ROUND PLAN 39 LANGUAGES RELYING ON MARKING ON WORDS THEMSELVES TO SHOW OVERALL MEANING Latin Russian Sandawe Warlpiri etc We may talk about marking grammatical function such as S Subject DO Direct Object 10 Indirect Object Gen Genitive or Possessor Russian I I Subject form I Ohiect form I Genitive form I lizard masculine 39asceritsa I jasceritsu I jasceritsy I fl feminine muxa I muxu I muxi I Jas eritsa pojmala muxu Muxu pojmala jasceritsa 01m1a1as erlt i vm lxu39 The lizard caught the y ijala muxu jascerltsa Jas eritsa muxu pojmala Muxu jasceritsa pojniala xvost jasceritsy jasceritsy xvost lizard s tail Though word order does not play a strong role in languages such as Russian one can think of the word endings as forming a hierarchical mental network of grammatical relations like those diagrammed by phrase structure trees in languages with more rigid word order 0 Conclusion All languages share a design Universal Grammar whereby actor action object of action modifiers of various kinds etc combine according to systematic rule in hierarchical relationships No other animal communication system has such a design nor do any other complex communication systems used by humans What would notions like subject of action modifier etc mean in mathematics computer programming languages music etc A NOTE ON X X BAR THEORY Pinker in The Language Instinct pp 97 105 refers to X bar Theory in his discussion of syntax in Universal Grammar The idea of X bar Theory is that all phrase types have similar internal structures The phrase types include VP NP PP Ava Ade and even Sentence which in X Bar Theory is CP for Complementizer Phrase Because of the similar structures we can in effect reduce all Phrase Structure rules to meta rules of the form XP gt SPEC X X gt X XP in which any of the categories V N P Adv Adj Complementizer can be substituted for X The way this theory is implemented to account for any particular language is complex and technical going far beyond what can be covered in an introductory course the UCLA Linguistics Department has a three quarter GRADUATE level sequence which covers just the basics and I don t find Pinker s discussion of this theory very enlightening For our purposes it will suffice to understand 1 that a set of rather simple and general rules such as those presented in class can account for an infinite range of sentences and 2 that a model of this type would be needed for every human language This is the basis of X bar Theory as well but X bar Theory attempts to take the concept to a higher order of ab traction 34 Linguistics 1 Schuh Discussion Questions on Syntax 1 Word chain devices A model for the structure of sentences might be a device where you choose a word which then leads to a limited set of choices for the next word and so on until you end up with a string of words that makes a sentence Below is a word chain device that would yield a number of English sentences The bracketed items mean that you can choose either the top one or the bottom one if I 7 am tall then you 7 are you are1 I am a Use this word chain device to create at least one GRAMMATICAL sentence of English heavy either or b Using the words in this word chain device make up at least one UNGRAMMATICAL sentence of English that the structure of this device would PREVENT you from creating c Use this word chain device to create at least one UNGRAMMATICAL sentence of English Explain why your sentence demonstrates the shortcoming of a word chain device as a model for sentence construction in natural human languages 2 Hierarchical structure Below are some headlines in capitals some phrases and a cartoon In each case there is an ambiguity that involves grouping the words in different ways For each item draw two tree structures showing the different word groupings For this question don t try to label the trees with NP VP etc ENRAGED COW INJURES FARMER WITH AX KILLER SENTENCED TO DIE FOR 2ND TIME the design has big squares and circles they said she would go yesterday WI Dr 0quotme 3 Grammatical cate ories Below are some headlines and phrases where there is an ambiguity that involves interpreting a word as belonging to either of two grammatical categories Identify the word and the two categories that it allows JUVENILE COURT TO TRY SHOOTING DEFENDANT smoking grass can be nauseating the horse looked very fast On the next page are some further examples that involve a combination of grouping and grammatical category ambiguity Analyze the ambiguities as in the above examples 5am aSynmx 35 SOUAD HELPS DOG EHTE ACTTM TEACHER STFUKES TDLE KTDS S EHEHAN FORCES FLVTNG UNAUTHOFUZED FLTGHTS fmm the Brut121mm r hts dver Bdsma afterthe UN eaee fumes uerrt m HEOEE ST TD SAH STUDENT D N TED fmm the 5mm ahdutarr attempt td keep a student dut thhe UC Davrs medmal schnDl BLOCK HEADS BACK ON CAMPATCN THATL mm the LA Ttmu refemng td the rate shermarr Btuekrurrrrrrrg tdr Shemfagam A Usmg the blue grammar drr page 27 drau new trees re trees rherudrrrg NF VF em furthefullumngsenhemes a It reserratreauy h He umrrthe raee thraugh the hlls easdy e The rurrher rrdm merm heat the Tanzarrrarr hy rrrehes d Guards guard guards nguards nguards 5 The turldurrrg sentenee rs meamngml Usrrrg the term gmmahmz td mearr grammar drr page 27 Srsers are srhhrrgs ufthexrbmthers a Ma a eharrge m the sentenee suehthat rt rs madamht but Wmmmancal h Make a eharrge m the sentenee sueh that rt rs meantglen but gmmahmz e Make a eharrge m the sentenee suehthat rt rs meantglen and wrammmmal 6 Usmg the htue grammar drr page 27 ereate a sentenee unth a tree strueture that Inwlves at leastth eases Bf recumun MDmma the earrddrr aka the dudumg three mndmcaunns td the gramma the recumve pmpemes Bf the grammar ear aeedurrt d e Cauld pdterrtrauy gd drr rrrrrrrrtely meat the hyphenated rtems as srrrgre drds rdrr page 27 then gure duthdu r the nght hahd sentenee whmh w a Add S ta the NF rule as rrrthe grammar under the DDDnBSbury earrddrr drr p 29 h Add ta VPquot td the end Elf the VP rule e Add betame Squot ta the end Bf the Advp rule
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