Coordination and the Syntax – Discourse Interface

Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press (2022)
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Abstract

This survey explores interactions between syntax and discourse, through a case study of patterns of extraction from coordinate structures. The theoretical breadth of the volume makes it the most complete account of extraction from coordinate structures to date: at first glance, it appears to be a syntactic matter, but the survey raises theoretical and empirical questions not just for syntax, but also across semantics, pragmatics, and discourse structure. Rather than promoting a single analysis, Daniel Altshuler and Robert Truswell outline reasonable hypotheses that allow theoretical conclusions to be deducted from empirical facts. The theoretical conclusions show that coordinate structures have the potential to discriminate between current syntactic theories, and to inform work on the interfaces between syntax, semantics, pragmatics, and discourse. In many cases, however, the necessary empirical work has not yet been carried out, and too much of the literature revolves around the same handful of primarily English examples. The volume offers a starting point for further research on extraction from coordinate structures, particularly in understudied languages, and provides a guide to how to tease out the theoretical implications of empirical findings.

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Author Profiles

Rob Truswell
University of Edinburgh
Daniel Altshuler
University of Oxford

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