Ling 452/552 “Syntax II”
Winter 2003, UH 10:00-11:30, 155 ED

Professor: Doris Payne, 229 Straub, 346-3894,
Office hours: T 1:00-3:00 & by appointment

GTF: Carey Benom, 242 Straub, 346-3199,
Office hours: TH 11:30-12:30, F 1-2

Course goals: Survey the morphosyntactic typology of, and discourse-functional properties behind, constituency, constituent order, complex sentences, and pragmatically-marked grammatical structures.

Grading:                                             452          552

Exercises: due Tuesdays at class time   40%          30%
Midterm:                                30%          25%
Final:                                  30%          25%
Paper                                                20%

Expectations: Reading should be done before the class session it is assigned for.  Lectures will not simply repeat the reading; more commonly, they will illustrate selected points by working through pieces of data.  Come prepared to discuss, with your questions that arise out of the reading.


• Exercises are generally based on data provided for you (put on some type of reserve, handed out in class, or via the web).  Ling 552 students may choose to do some “exercises” based on the language you plan to use for your final paper; if you choose this option for any assignment, you are expected to cover equivalent ground to that asked for on the “regular” exercise, though adapted for the relevant language.

• Exercises should be: (1) Typed.  (2) Claims should be argued for (i.e., explain why you believe a claim to be true, or how you know something is true). (3) Claims should be supported by one or more examples.  (4) Take the reader “by the hand” and talk him/her through the examples (never just plunk down an example and expect the reader to see in it what you see, no matter how brilliant you think your reader is).

Two good rules for technical writing: (i) Basically assume that the reader is stupid and has to be told everything. (ii) Since the material deals with such abstract referents, err on the side of overusing full NPs (rather than pronouns, even when you have just mentioned the referent); and repeat the same term when you mean the same concept.  Don’t worry, we won’t think you are not being “creative”.

• Late assignments will  not be accepted, nor commented on.

Paper: Ling 552 students will write a term paper.  Get an approved language. Choose one approved topic from the course.  Write a paper arguing from data for the analysis of a particular construction or constructions.  Length: 15-20 pages, double spaced, 1-inch margins, glossing, references, writing, etc.

Possible topic types (these are only a few ideas):
In language X, a particular sentence type is a clause chaining rather than a serial verb construction.
• Language X has hierarchically structured NPs with intermediate N-bar levels, rather than just two levels of structure
• Relative Clauses in language X are intermediate in finiteness between fully finite independent clauses, and nominalizations or infinitives on the other.
The basic constituent orders across all construction types in Language X are Head-Dependent.
• Relative Clauses, information questions, and contrastive focus constructions in Language X all share the following structural properties in common (a, b, c, ...), arguing there is something functional in common among them.






Reading: 452+552 
Bold = 552

Assignment Due

April 1 

Course overview



April 3

Hierarchical Structure: The Noun Phrase 

Radford (focus on pp. 79-100)
Givón 1-23 (skim)

552 lg. for paper

April 8

Flat Structure: The "Noun Phrase"

Payne 1993a

P Set 1
Corrections & more data

April 10

Nominalization & Finiteness

Givón 24-37


April 15

Constituent order 

Greenberg 1963 (skim); Dryer 1988 

P Set 2

April 17

Constituent order

Payne 1992a


April 22

Constituent order explanations


P Set 3 Windows XP
P Set 3 Windows 95
P Set 3 Works

April 24


Givon 39-58; Noonan 42-140


April 29

Complementation; auxiliary verbs 

Givon 59-90; 272-285

P Set 4 Windows XP
P Set 4 Windows 95
P Set 4 Works

May 1

Relative Clauses

Givon 175-211

Watch this: One event, or a million?

552: paper topic

May 6

Relative Clauses

Givon 211-220

P Set 5 Windows XP

P Set 5 Windows 95

P Set 5 Works

May 8

Discourse: Main Event Line, vs. non-MEL

Payne 1992b


May 13

Adverbial clauses

Longacre 1985: 235-263; Givon 327-348

P Set 6 Windows XP
P Set 6 Windows 95
P Set 6 Works

May 15


Midterm Review Questions (Word)
Midterm Review Questions (Works)



May 20

Clause Chaining 1

Longacre 1985:263-286; Givon 348-387


May 22

Clause Chaining 2

Continue reading from May 20


May 27

Serial verb constructions

Foley & Olson 1985

P Set 7 Windows XP

P Set 7 Windows 95

P Set 7 Works

May 29 

Discourse: Presupposition vs. Assertion, focus types

Givon 221-25; Payne 1993b; Dik et al.


June 3 

Mental models/spaces & topic switch 

Payne 1995:449-465; Givon 253-268

P Set 8 Windows XP

P Set 8 Windows 95

P Set 8 Works

June 5

Non-declarative speech acts

Givón 287-317; 318-326


8:00 a.m. Tuesday, 
  June 10


Final Exam Review Questions (Word)

Final Exam Review Questions (Works)



11:00 a.m. Thursday, 
  June 12

552 paper due




442/552 READING LIST, Spring 2003 (subject to revision)

Dik, Simon et al. 1981.  “On the typology of focus phenomena”. Perspectives on Functional Grammar, ed. by Teun Hoekstra, Harry van der Hulst, Michael Moortgat, 41-74.  Dordrecht:  Foris.

Dryer, Matthew. 1988.  “Object-verb order and adjective-noun order: dispelling a myth.”  Lingua 74:77-109.

Foley, William and Mike Olson. 1985.  “Clausehood and verb serialization”.  Grammar Inside and Outside the Clause, ed. by Johanna Nichols and Anthony Woodbury.  Cambridge:  Cambridge University Press.

Givón, Talmy.  2001.  Syntax, Volume II. Amsterdam : John Benjamins.

Greenberg, Joseph.  1963/1996.  “Some universals of grammar with particular reference to the order of meaningful elements”.  Universals of Language, ed. by Joseph Greenberg, 73-113. (2nd edition).  Cambridge, MA:  MIT Press.  [read especially Appendix III]

Longacre, Robert.  1985.  “Sentences as combinations of clauses”.  Language Typology and Syntactic Description, III, ed. by Tomothy Shopen, 235-286. Cambridge:  Cambridge University Press.

Noonan, Michael.  1985.  “Complementation”.  Language Typology and Syntactic Description, III, ed. by Tomothy Shopen, 42-140.  Cambridge:  Cambridge University Press.

Payne, Doris.  1992a.   “Nonidentifiable information and pragmatic order rules in O’odham”.  Pragmatics of Word Order Flexibility, ed. by Doris L. Payne, 137-166.  Amsterdam:  John Benjamins.

Payne, Doris. 1992b. “Narrative continuity vs. discontinuity in Yagua.”  Discourse Processes 15.375-394.

Payne, Doris. 1993a.  “Nonconfigurationality and Discontinuous Expressions in Panare”.  Proceedings of the Berkeley Linguistics Society, Special Session on Syntactic Issues in Native American Languages, ed. by David Peterson.

Payne, Doris.  1993b.  “Meaning and pragmatics or order in selected South American Indian languages.”  The Role of Theory in Language Description, ed. by William Foley, 281-314.  [skip section 4.4]

Payne, Doris.  1995.  “Verb initial languages and information order”.  Word Order in Discourse, ed. by Pamela Downing and Michael Noonan, p. 449-485.  Amsterdam:  John Benjamins.

Radford, Andrew.  1981.  Transformational Syntax: A Student’s Guide to Chomsky’s Extended Standard Theory. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.  Chapter 3.  “X-bar Syntax”.  pp. 79-117.