Linguistics 4248A
Advanced Syntactic Analysis

Course Description

Critical analysis of the development of transformational generative grammar. We will first examine Chomsky’s (1957) analysis of English auxiliary system, and see how it is developed into the principles-and-parameters theory and the current minimalist program.

The course will be conducted through lectures and classroom discussions based upon the reading materials, students’ individual research, and other materials. Students are required to select a small research topic for the term paper, do research in consultation with the instructor, and write a short (20± single-space) page term paper.

Students are expected to actively participate in discussion and conduct their own research.

Coures Objective:

  • To acquire the basic knowledge of the current transformational syntax
  • To become fluent in the current linguistic research methods
  • To understand the issues for the current research program(s) in syntax
  • To perform syntactic research

Required Course Texts:

Lasnik, Howard, with Marcela Depiante and Arthur Stepanov. 2000. Syntactic Structures Revisited: Contemporary Lectures on Classic Transformational Theory. Cambridge, Ma: MIT Press.

Course Requirements:

There will be one (take-home) mid-term test, and one term-paper. This constitutes, respectively, 30% and 50% of the final grade. Class participation and preparation (background research) constitutes 20%. This may include short (surprise) quizzes regarding the reading materials; such quizzes, if used, will not count 5% or more of the final grade.