Crosslinguistic Perspectives on Argument Structure: Implications for Learnability offers a unique interdisciplinary perspective on argument structure and its role in language acquisition. Much contemporary work in linguistics and psychology assumes that argument structure is strongly constrained by a set of universal principles, and that these principles are innate, providing children with certain bootstrapping strategies that help them hone in on basic aspects of the syntax and lexicon of their language. Drawing on a broad range of crosslinguistic data, this volume shows that languages are much more diverse in their argument structure properties than has been realized. This diversity raises challenges for many existing proposals about language acquisition, affects the range of solutions that can be considered plausible, and highlights new acquisition puzzles that until now have passed unnoticed.The volume comprises chapters by both specialists in first language acquisition and field linguists working on a variety of lesser-known languages. Some chapters offer typological perspectives, examining the basic structures of a given language with language-learnability issues in mind. Other chapters investigate specific problems of language acquisition in one or more languages. Taken as a whole, the volume illustrates how detailed work on crosslinguistic variation is critical to the development of insightful theories of language acquisition. This volume integrates important contemporary issues in linguistics and language acquisition. With its rich crosslinguistic base and the innovative empirical methods it showcases for studying the role of argument structure in language acquisition, it will be of great interest to linguists and language acquisition specialists alike, as well as to upper-level students in linguistics and psychology in the United States and abroad. Download :
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