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Historical Syntax in Cross-Linguistic Perspective
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Book description

In this major new work Alice Harris and Lyle Campbell set out to establish a general framework for the investigation of linguistic change. Systematic cross-linguistic comparison of syntactic change across a wide variety of languages is used to construct hypotheses about the universals and limits of language change more generally. In particular, the authors seek to move closer towards describing the range of causes of syntactic change to develop an understanding of the mechanisms of syntactic change, and to provide an understanding of why some languages undergo certain changes and not others. The authors draw on languages as diverse as Pipil and French, Georgian and Estonian, and the data presented is one of the book's great strengths. Rigor and precision are combined here with a great breadth of scholarship to produce a unique resource for the study of linguistic change, which will be of use to scholars and students alike.

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Contents

  • Frontmatter
    pp i-viii
  • Contents
    pp ix-xii
  • Preface
    pp xiii-xiv
  • List of abbreviations
    pp xv-xviii
  • 1 - Introduction
    pp 1-13
  • 2 - The history of historical syntax: major themes
    pp 14-47
  • 3 - Overview of a theory of syntactic change
    pp 48-60
  • 4 - Reanalysis
    pp 61-96
  • 5 - Extension
    pp 97-119
  • 6 - Language contact and syntactic borrowing
    pp 120-150
  • 7 - Processes that simplify biclausal structures
    pp 151-194
  • 8 - Word order
    pp 195-239
  • 9 - Alignment
    pp 240-281
  • 10 - On the development of complex constructions
    pp 282-313
  • 11 - The nature of syntactic change and the issue of causation
    pp 314-343
  • 12 - Reconstruction of syntax
    pp 344-376
  • Appendix
    pp 377-379
  • Notes
    pp 380-435
  • References
    pp 436-477
  • Index of languages and language families
    pp 478-481
  • Index of scholars
    pp 482-484
  • Index of subjects
    pp 485-488

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