Introduction to an area of linguistic study not covered by the regular departmental course offerings.
LING 480 Topics in Linguistics: Language Universals
This course will be an introduction to universal grammar, language universals, and linguistic typology. It will explore in detail the following issues:
· what counts as a possible (and impossible) human language?
· what is universal to all languages?
· what is subject to crosslinguistic variation?
· how can we explain the patterns of variation found in the world’s languages?
· how can we explain the lack of certain linguistic patterns or certain language types?
Requirements: thoughtful completion of reading and homework assignments, and a short term paper on a topic related to the course.
Textbook: Comrie, Bernard (1989). Language universals and linguistic typology: Syntax and morphology (2nd edition). Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Student learning goals
General method of instruction
Introduction to Linguistics (or the equivalent)
Class assignments and grading