This is the first course in the graduate syntax series. The overarching goal of the series (and this class) is to build familiarity with assumptions, results, active debates, and forms of argument in the contemporary research literature in syntax. Topics for discussion in this course include phrase structure, linearization, motivations for movement, subcategorization, subject/object asymmetries, DP licensing, agreement, case, null elements, raising and control. Skills to be emphasized include analysis of syntactic data, presentation and evaluation of arguments, critical reading, and choice of rhetorical structure for articles and conference abstracts.
Reading schedule (Subject to evolution)
Readings discussed this week
Homeworks due this week
Foundations of generative grammar. Components of a syntactic theory.
Chomsky 1965, chapter 1
Assignment 1 (short)
Phrase structure. X' syntax -- how much, and why?
Assignment 2 (short)
Merge, internal and external.
Assignment 3 part 1 (short)
Selection, subcategorization and the lexicon.
Assignment 3 part 2 (long)
Case, thematic roles, and v.
Assignment 4 (long)
The operation Agree.
Assignment 5 (short)
Agree, expletives and unaccusativity.
Assignment 6 (long)
Expletives, passives and unaccusatives.
Assignment 7 (short)
Case and agreement: what is the relationship?
Baker and Vinokurova 2010
Assignment 8 (short)
Squib project presentations
Assignment 9 (short)
Raising and control infinitivals. Approaches to control.