Arguments against universal grammar

Components of generative grammar

2Judicial supremacy emerges with the concurrence of two independent but often concurrent facts. First, the image of the judiciary as the ideal repository of constitutional interpretation and, second, the social fact that constitutional practices increasingly transfer political power to their courts, notably in matters of constitutional interpretation. The result of these two features is a model of juristocracy.2 This is a model that culminates in “the extreme position that (a) there is no constitutional problem that cannot be solved by the courts, and (b) that there is no constitutional problem that is not authentically solved until it is solved by a court. “3

4The implicit thesis is described and critiqued in section 2. Its proponents view constitutional interpretation as an activity by which only judges can describe and construct constitutional meaning when the constitution is vague, ambiguous, or silent. These authors understand interpretation as the application of a series of methods applied by judges to cases in which the law does not provide a clear answer to a concrete dispute. This way of theorizing about the interpretation of the constitution excludes citizens from this practice insofar as citizens are not considered capable of imposing meaning on a constitutional charter.

Savings meaning

Today we want to solve all the doubts you may have about this language, as well as to put an end to the false myths that have been created around this language. If you are a lover of languages, of the curiosities they contain and of the fantabulous world of languages in general, this article may be of interest to you.

Anyway, what we can tell you is that most of its words come from “European languages” (we put it in quotation marks because in reality the origin of this term derives more from its etymological sources). The great exception (so to speak and give it a grandiloquent tone) would be its grammar: regular, very uncomplicated… What languages could it resemble? Well, against all odds, Asian languages. Sharing many aspects with the Chinese language (which, believe it or not, has a fairly simple grammar).

What better way to check some of the features mentioned above. In addition to the terminology included in the images, here are some other words that you will see in any Esperanto text:

Que es gramática generativa

[2] Ver, p. ex., os dados da língua gur brevemente explicados e discutidos por G. J. Dimmendaal em DIMMENDAAL, G. J. 2000. Morphology. En: B. Heine, D. Nurse (Eds.). African Languages. An Introduction. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 161-193 (pp. 189-190).

[3] Recomendo a leitura de obras exaustivas, especificamente dedicadas a este assunto, de entre as qual destaco o livro de Greville Corbett: CORBETT, G. G. 2006. Agreement. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

[4] SZEMERÉNYI, O. J. L. 1996. Introduction to Indo-European Linguistics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 155-157; BEEKES, R. S. P. 2011. Lingüística indoeuropea comparada. An Introduction. 2nd. ed. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, p. 189; LURAGHI, S. 2011. El origen del sistema de género protoindoeuropeo: Consideraciones tipológicas. Folia Linguistica. 45(2): 435-464.

[6] Cf. entre otros textos de esta autora, los siguientes libros: GIMBUTAS, M. 1989.  El lenguaje de la diosa: Desenterrando los símbolos ocultos de la civilización occidental. San Francisco: Harper & Row; GIMBUTAS, M. 1991.  The Civilization of the Goddess: The World of Old Europe. San Francisco: Harper.

Poverty of the Chomsky stimulus

As you will notice from the reference in the title, I am referring to Tecumseh Fitch’s recent book: The Evolution of Language. I should clarify: I haven’t read the book yet (in fact, I don’t even have it on paper). What you will read below is a translated and summarized version of the review circulated in Linguist List. In case you want to know, the original author is Anne Reboul.

PS. A special mention for the cover of the book. I’ve never seen anything more appropriate: a sparsely branched tree at sunrise. As Lenny Leonard said, “it must be one of those… ehh… metaphors”.

The book is intended as an introduction to the study of the evolution of language, conceived as the exclusive patrimony of the human species. Fitch intends to objectively expose the various theories proposed in the discipline and the data that support and contradict these dichotomous perspectives. The book consists of an introduction and four sections of equal length: “The lay of the land: a review of the disciplines and data relevant to the evolution of language”, “Meeting the ancestors”, “The evolution of speech”, and finally “Evaluating phylogenetic models of language evolution”.