101 10-23 - INDV 101 Section 57 Hands-on syntax Today...

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INDV 101 October 23, 2009 Section 57
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Hands-on syntax Today, you’ll get your first taste of tree- drawing. This is sort of like ‘sentence diagramming’ from middle school grammar classes… But scientific/correct.
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Recall from last time Constituency : sentences are not just strings of words, but are made up of hierarchically nested groupings of words ( constituents ). One way of representing constituency is with brackets : [the man [with [the golden gun]]]
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Brackets <=> trees Brackets are easy to write, and work well enough for small structures. But once we get more involved hierarchical structures, they become very difficult to read: [[the [very tall] man][ate [[home-made] soup [with [[[badly cooked] onions] and [[rather spotty] potatoes]]]] [on [Sunday]]]]. So, we need a clearer way of representing constituency. For this, we’ll use trees .
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Bracketed vs. tree representation of ‘the man with the golden gun’ [the man [with [the golden gun]]] NP D N PP the man P NP with D AP N the gun A golden
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Endocentricity: phrases have heads. So, if you have a VP, it must contain a V All words project a phrase. If there is a word of category X (= N, V, etc), there must be an XP right on top of it. Principle of Modification: if a phrase modifies a word X, it must be contained within XP.
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101 10-23 - INDV 101 Section 57 Hands-on syntax Today...

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