09810LING500300, Syntax I, Fall 2009

Graduate Institute of Linguistics

National Tsing Hua University, Taiwan




General information

Instructor: T.-H. Jonah Lin

Time & location: Wednesday 10:00 am – 1:00 pm, HSS C519

Tel: (03) 571-5131, ext. 34402

E-mail: jonahlin@mx.nthu.edu.tw


Teaching material 

1. Handouts, which will be distributed in class.

2. Transformational grammar: A first course. A. Radford. Cambridge University Press, 1988.



1. Class attendance, 10%.

2. Examinations:

- Exam 1: 15% [2 (chapter 1-3)]

- Exam 2, the midterm: 30% [1, 2 (chapter 4-5)]

- Exam 3: 15% [2 (chapter 6-7)]

- Exam 4, the final: 30% [1, 2 (chapter 8-10)]

* The score of the summer assignment exam will be incorporated into the score of class attendance.


Course schedule

I. Introduction

1. Scientific theory and linguistic theory

2. Knowledge of language and the language faculty

3. Some facts concerning English and Mandarin Chinese

4. UG and the architecture of grammar

II. Phrase structure

1. Words and categories

2. Phrase structure rules and English phrase structure

3. Subcategorization, selectional restriction, and lexical insertion

4. Chinese phrase structure

5. Tense and inflection

6. X' theory

7. Subject and VP-Internal Subject Hypothesis

8. Light verb v and other functional categories

9. The theory of bare phrase structure

III. Transformation

1. Transformation in human language: movement, deletion, and beyond

2. Transformational rules and the expressive power of rules

3. Transformation and meaning

4. Structure preservation

5. Conditions on transformations: A-over-A, island constraints, and Subjacency

6. Types of movement: A-movement, A'-movement, and head movement

7. Locality, minimality, and Relativized Minimality

8. Transformation and its conditions in Mandarin Chinese

9. Movement of empty operator

IV. Driving movement (I)

1. Optional movement and obligatory movement

2. Case: the “classical” theory

3. Checking of Case feature

4. Theta-roles and predication

5. The ECM construction

6. Control and raising

7. The EPP

8. Application of Case theory in Mandarin Chinese

V. Driving movement (II)

1. Scope and “logical form”

2. Logical Form (LF) in generative grammar

3. Quantifier Raising (QR) and Quantifier Lowering (QL)

4. LF movement of wh-phrases

VI. Further problems on LF

1. The complement/non-complement asymmetry and the superiority effects

2. The Empty Category Principle (ECP)

3. The CED, island effects in LF, and unselective binding

4. The binding theory

5. Binding of wh-traces and reconstruction

6. Strong crossover, and weak crossover

7. Binding of wh-phrases in Mandarin Chinese

8. Parasitic gap

9. More on QR

10: The Antecedent-Contained Deletion (ACD)

11. QR, parallelism, and economy