Challenges at the syntax-semantics interface
The order of words in a sentence is determined by the syntax of the language, but this is not the only job syntax has been proposed to have. Many syntactic models assume that the meaning of the sentence is closely related to its syntacic structure. In many cases, such a relationship is straightforward, but a number of phenomena challenge this relationship. This seminar will explore some of these challenges. Topics may include free word order, raising, control, binding, quantifier and neg raising, negative polarity items, questions, and imperatives.
- A Brief History of the Syntax-Semnatics Interface in Western Formal Linguistics (Partee 2014)
- The Syntax-Semantics Interface in Generative, Parallel, and Functional Frameworks (Contreras-García 2015)
- Primarily the phenomena: Subject and object control: syntax, semantics, pragmatics (Comrie 1984)
- Foundational paper not only in the treatment of control but in the use of logic in the syntax-semantics interface: Partee 1973
- Control in Montague Grammar (Bach 1979)
- Particle Verbs and Prepositional Phrases:
- Quantifier Raising:
- Heim and Kratzer 1999 Semantics in Generative Grammar, chapter 7. I have the book in my office; come borrow it
- Koller and Pinkal 2012. Semantic research in computational linguistics
- Introduction to the phenomena: Büring 2005, Binding Theory chapter 1. I have the book in my office; come borrow it.
- Reinhard and Reuland 1993
- Free Word Order
- Kiss 1981, Structural Relations in Hungarian
- Kashket 1986: Parsing a free word-order language: Warlpiri
There's little recent work on this topic, and I don't really know why.
Handouts and Slides
- Syllabus/Class 1 handout
- Class 2 handout: semantics exercises
- Handout: particle verbs
- Exercise: particle verbs
This course is offered in the winter semester of the 2017-18 school year.