Language and Computation advanced course:
An introduction to minimalist grammars.
Research in the tradition of Chomsky's minimalist program is often inaccessible to non-minimalists, partly because of the highly intuitive level at which much of the work in this tradition is conducted. This course will show how major components of recent Chomskian syntax can be expressed in formal grammars inspired by Stabler's "minimalist grammar" (MG). Many MG variants have been rigorously related to MC-TAGs and other well-understood formalisms, so that now a wide range of Chomskian proposals can be understood and assessed by formally minded linguists from every linguistic tradition. Considering especially recent (empirically consequential) proposals about locality, copying operations, adjunction, and interfaces (phonetic, morphological, semantic), this formal treatment sometimes reveals surprising aspects of those proposals---in particular when being depicted against the "classical" background of parsing complexity and generative capacity---that have been obscured in the informal literature.