Show Less
Restricted access

Symmetry Breaking and Symmetry Restoration

Evidence from English Syntax of Coordination


Szymon J. Napierała

This book treats the faculty of language as part of the Universe subject to physical laws. It presents phenomena from syntax and semantics in the interdisciplinary context. The author analyses the origin of syntax and semantics as autonomous modules (asymmetry), even though they display parallelisms (symmetry). He presents linguistic phenomena in the interdisciplinary context where spontaneous symmetry breaking has a central explanatory role, as it is the case in the physical world.

Show Summary Details
Restricted access

Chapter 4: Empirical evidence: coordination


4.1     Coordination – introduction

Still another empirical field to test the SSB hypothesis advocated in this book as well as the related issue of the autonomy of syntax is linguistic coordination. Coordinate structures appear to be more symmetric than subordinate structures at what Carston (2003:254) would call a pre-theoretic level of analysis. As they involve two (or more) phrases that appear to have similar linguistic status conjoined with a conjunction, they used to be considered an exception to X-bar theoretic binary syntax. Namely, coordinate structure like (98) were described by means of ternary branching.

As illustrated in (99), coordinate constructions including two or more coordinated conjuncts and subordinate constructions involving minimally two recursively embedded phrases differ in terms of endocentricity, at least at a pre-theoretic level of analysis.

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.

Do you have any questions? Contact us.

Or login to access all content.