New book on syntactic reconstruction

A new book is out on syntactic reconstruction. I’ve got an article in it on some of the differences between phonological and syntactic approaches to reconstruction. Enjoy!

This is a collection of state-of-the-art papers in the field of syntactic reconstruction. It treats a range of topics which are representative of current debates in historical syntax. The novelty and merit of the present book is, the editors believe, that, in contrast to most previous work on diachronic syntax, it combines the perspectives of the traditional philological research on syntactic reconstruction with the insights of modern syntactic theory, as it is emphasised in the Foreword by Giuseppe Longobardi. The volume includes articles by well-recognized researchers in historical linguistics with a focus on syntactic change. In the present volume syntactic reconstruction is discussed from a variety of angles, including historical linguistics, phenomena of language contact, generative approaches as well as typological and variationist research. In the articles, languages from a diverse range of families are discussed, including Indo-European, North and South Caucasian, Sino-Tibetan, and Turkic.

Table of contents


Giuseppe Longobardi
Syntactic reconstruction: Methods and new insights

Gisella Ferraresi and Maria Goldbach
How much syntactic reconstruction is possible?

Acrisio Pires and Sally G. Thomason
Reconstruction in syntax: Reconstruction of patterns

Alice C. Harris
Reconstructing complex structures: A typological perspective

Ferdinand von Mengden
Competitive Indo-European syntax

Rosemarie Lühr
Principles of syntactic reconstruction and “morphology as paleosyntax”: The case of some Indo-European secondary verbal formations

Irene Balles
Syntactic change and syntactic borrowing in generative grammar

Claire Bowern

One response to “New book on syntactic reconstruction

  1. Looks fantastic! I’ll have to lobby the local library system to get a copy.

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