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Language universals: Abstract but not mythological

  • Mark C. Baker (a1)

I present the so-called Verb-Object Constraint as a serious proposal for a true linguistic universal. It provides an example of the kind of abstraction in linguistic analysis that seems warranted, of how different languages can confirm such a universal in different ways, and why approaches that avoid all abstractness miss important linguistic generalizations.

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Behavioral and Brain Sciences
  • ISSN: 0140-525X
  • EISSN: 1469-1825
  • URL: /core/journals/behavioral-and-brain-sciences
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