By Samuel David Epstein, Erich M. Groat, Ruriko Kawashima, Hisatsugu Kitahara

A basic notion in all syntactic theories is that of a syntactic relation among syntactic items. whereas contemporary paintings within the Minimalist Framework has tried to provide an explanation for the character of syntactic items by way of basic and conceptually helpful assumptions in regards to the language school, the family that carry among syntactic items has now not been equally explored. The authors start up such an exploration and argue that yes primary relatives equivalent to c-command, dominance, and checking family members could be defined inside a derivational method of structure-building.This process has major effects in regards to the structure of the syntactic part. Semantic and phonological interpretation don't need to function upon the output phrase-structure illustration created via the syntactic derivation. Interpretation is extra simply computed derivationally, via examining the stairs of a derivation, instead of the one output constitution created via it. the result's a brand new and arguable level-free version of the syntactic element of the human language school. This topical and well timed Minimalist research will curiosity specialist and theoretical linguists, syntacticians, and an individual drawn to modern methods to syntactic concept.

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Extra resources for A Derivational Approach to Syntactic Relations

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We will, however, assume that C-command is indeed a primitive. In the next section, we will attempt to show that contrary to all syntactic analyses since Reinhart (1979) and including, most recently, Kayne (1994), Ccommand need not be expressed as an unexplained, representational definition but can instead be expressed as a natural explicable derivational construct, assuming Chomsky's (1993, 1994, 1995) elimination of a distinct base component (and along with it, the elimination of a base-generated deep structure level of repre- The Derivation of Syntactic Relations 23 sentation), and the postulation of a syntactic component in which derivations are characterized by iterative, bottom-up application of universal, simple, and perhaps unifiable rules, Merge (Generalized Transformation) and Move (Singulary Transformation).

Consequently, it would seem that we could eliminate the stipulated, unexplained representational definition of "C-command" (4) with respect to these cases, since the relation is expressed by independently motivated transformational rule. There is, however, a problem with this suggestion: when Merge pairs two categories, this establishes only symmetrical (reciprocal) C-command relations. Consider example (14): (14) The arrows in (14) each indicate desired C-command relations. But Merge does not totally subsume the representational definition of C-command, precisely because there exist C-command relations between two categories that were not merged.

Vb = 3 terms: 1. Vb itself 2. Dit. Given that Da and Vb were merged, derivational C-command (16b) entails: (21) Da C-commands: Vb, Vlikes, and Dit V, C-commands: Da , Dthe, and Ndog But assuming a relational analysis of a syntactic category's phrasestructure status (Muysken 1982, Freidin 1992), in the representation (19) Vb, being neither a minimal nor a maximal projection of V (the verb), is not a term (or is an "invisible term") of (19) (Chomsky 1995). Therefore, Vb is "stricken from the record" in (21)—that is, it is not a C-commander at all.

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