The Syntax-Morphology Interface: A Study of Syncretism
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DescriptionSyncretism - where a single form serves two or more morphosyntactic functions - is a persistent problem at the syntax-morphology interface. It results from a 'mismatch' whereby the syntax of a language makes a particular distinction but the morphology does not. This pioneering book provides a full-length study of inflectional syncretism, presenting a typology of its occurrence across a wide range of languages. The implications of syncretism for the syntax-morphology interface have long been recognised: it argues either for an enriched model of feature structure (thereby preserving a direct link between function and form), or for the independence of morphological structure from syntactic structure. This book presents a compelling argument for the autonomy of morphology and the resulting analysis is illustrated in a series of formal case studies within Network Morphology. It will be welcomed by all linguists interested in the relation between words and the larger units of which they are a part.
Cambridge University Press
12 March 2009
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