D. Gary Miller

in Language Change and Linguistic Theory, Volume II

Published in print August 2010 | ISBN: 9780199583430
Published online January 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191595288 | DOI:

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Positional correlations and linearization changes mark the transition to morphology and syntax. On most theoretical accounts, morphology is not autonomous, but interacts with at least three other domains: (i) phonology and perception, (ii) the lexicon/culture, and (iii) syntax. The first is treated extensively in Volume I. The second is illustrated with the rise of the feminine gender in Indo‐European, and the third by documentation of the changes from Latin to Romance in the shift from morphological to syntactic coding of reflexive, anticausative, middle, and passive. In morphological change, both inflectional and derivational markers are shown to spread by lexical diffusion. Syntactic change is (micro)parametric and is typically motivated by changes in lexical features combined with morphological attrition and/or principles of efficient computation. The latter are especially important for frequent crosslinguistic changes, including the numerous shifts from lexical to functional content as well as changes within functional categories. The volume closes with the genesis of creole inflectional, derivational, and syntactic categories, involving the interaction of contact phenomena with morphological and syntactic change.

Keywords: Positional correlations; linearization changes; parametric change; creole; crosslinguistic change; efficient computation; morphological attrition; Indo-European

Chapter.  4427 words. 

Subjects: Historical and Diachronic Linguistics

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