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Eric Baucom Professor Colin Allen Final Paper – Q540 Introduction The argument from the poverty of the stimulus has been put forward as a reason for believing that language acquisition proceeds from rational, innate, language-specific structures in the brain, and that a purely data-driven approach to learning language cannot account for all that is learned. This argument has been a roadblock to potential research into the data-driven aspects of language acquisition and has constrained the discourse in the field. We present and evaluate Pullum and Scholz (2002)’s empirical assessment of arguments from the poverty of the stimulus, and discuss their potential effects on the community of generative linguists. First, we characterize the arguments from the poverty of the stimulus, according to Pullum and Scholz. Then, we describe and evaluate their assessment of four particular instantiations of the argument. Finally, we offer concluding remarks and some ideas about how the field could react. Characterization of Arguments from the Poverty of the Stimulus As it has been stated in the literature, the argument from the poverty of the stimulus (APS) has taken on many guises. Inasmuch as it is a general topic of discussion in the cognitive sciences, and that it is generally assumed to have empirical support for its validity, the APS really ought to be precisely expressed. However, in many discussions in the literature, a mixture of premises is set forth, and, while all presentations conclude linguistic nativism, they rarely
outline the reasoning that gets them there. As Pullum and Scholz (2002) point out, the premises typically are about the child’s acquired language state, or about the environmental influence: 1. Acquired language state a. speed of acquisition b. reliability of acquisition (all children) c. acquire ability to produce infinite sentences d. acquire only the correct grammar (avoid appealing alternatives) e. acquired grammatical theory is underdetermined by the data f. children acquire the same language in a given community g. children’s acquisitions across language communities show striking universal properties 2. Environmental influence a. no reward for improvements in performance b. amount of data is finite c. individual learning environments highly variable d. many grammatical sentences never produced (corollary of finiteness) e. no information about what is ungrammatical (only positive evidence) f. data are noisy (receive ungrammatical input through slips of the tongue, etc) While many of these claims are related, they are clearly many of them, and to refute all of them (and every permutation of them presented in the literature) would be quite an undertaking. Therefore, Pullum and Scholz decide to focus on one clear argument, made explicit by Hornstein and Lightfoot (1981: 9):
the weak version may be stated as follows: “People attain knowledge of the structure of their language for which there is a lack of evidence that is adequate to the task in the data to which they are exposed as children. To admit the APS to empirical study. The claim from Hornstein and Lightfoot is quite strong.” This claim differs from 2b. if this claim were correct. Pullum and Scholz adopt a weaker version. 1999a) argument: Let’s say a linguist demonstrates that speaker S knows grammatical fact F about a language L. But how does the linguist know fact F about L? If she presents examples from L demonstrating F. it is much stronger. datadriven means. where there is no evidence for certain acquired aspects of language. it would be particularly damning for strict nonnativist approaches to linguistics. then.“People attain knowledge of the structure of their language for which no evidence is available in the data to which they are exposed as children. in fact.” . resulting in a viciously circular argument. We paraphrase Pullum and Scholz’s presentation of Sampson’s (1989. and 2e – indeed. which are so rare that the average person wouldn’t have a chance of acquiring them through empirical. 2d. Opposed to the strong version. are aware of certain reliably present aspects of the language. If she claims she knows F innately. with no previous empirical data to support this knowledge. it may be self-contradictory. the she presupposes nativism in order to prove it. This amounts to saying that linguists. it is saying that such data for the corresponding linguistic phenomenon don’t exist. Indeed. through exhaustive study of the language. then she admits that empirical evidence is available. Not only is the claim saying that the data are small or the wrong kind. as Pullum and Scholz point out.
However. and primarily debunking them with positive empirical evidence. Pullum and Scholz come back to this in their analyses of four different versions of the APS: evidence can be found for each. Pullum and Scholz choose to remain focused on analyzing the most popular presentations of their particular interpretation of the APS. such that they are inadequate to the task of learning F. and that linguists still have a long way to . Many linguists propose that this is a crucial feature of the APS. It is important to note that Pullum and Scholz avoid discussions of the absence of negative evidence. The linguist has knowledge of F.Pullum and Scholz point out that this is implied by Lightfoot (1982b: 428) when he says there cases where “there are no data available to the child which will suffice to establish some rule or principle” but the rule or principle is acquired anyway. And indeed. and so they are able to present a shifting target. despite the lack of evidence. but what constitutes adequate evidence? Nativists have not given any figures in this regard. They in fact make no claim that there are no innate linguistic structures. The most notably underspecified aspect of this formulation is what constitutes adequate evidence. only that the empirical results are not yet in. through intensive study of L. and it does have some of the learning-theoretic flavor that colors the Pullum and Scholz enterprise. Pullum and Scholz argue that the onus ought to be shifted to the nativists to determine what constitutes adequate evidence. The interpretation now breaks out of selfcontradiction: A linguist demonstrates a speaker S knows a grammatical fact F about a language L. where there is a lack of L expressions providing evidence for F.
Pullum and Scholz can present their version of the APS in deductive form.] e. The first premise 3a is fairly generous to nativists – it claims that if there is anything other than purely general learning mechanisms at work. meaning there are inborn languagespecific cognitive structures that assist in the acquisition process. their acquisition is entirely data-driven. or. With this assumption.go in this regard. [From (b) and (c). modus tollens. disjunctive syllogism. Conclusion: human infants learn their first languages by means of innately-primed learning. Thus human infants do not learn their first languages by means of data-driven learning.] d. then they can never learn anything for which they lack crucial evidence. They leave open the possibility that innateness will play a role.] b. and perhaps an investigation of negative evidence will be a productive line to take to that end. [By definition of data-driven learning. Pullum and Scholz define two possibilities for how humans learn language: they are either innately-primed for the task.] If the premises hold. which we reproduce below: 3. [From (a) and (d). meaning it relies on general learning mechanisms that are also used in generalizing other (non-linguistic) experience. But infants do in fact learn things for which they lack crucial evidence. by assumption. Human infants learning their first languages either by data-driven learning or by innately-primed learning. If human infants acquire their first languages via data-driven learning. [Empirical premise. The Argument from Poverty of the Stimulus (APS) a. [Disjunctive premise. the conclusion is true.] c. For the sake of argument. .
the claim of data-driven learning of the acquirendum would be supported. d. in the following four presentations of the APS. “infants learn things for which they lack crucial evidence. Pullum and Scholz reject all of them because they fail on showing the soundness of the empirical premise. e. Indeed. INDISPENSABILITY ARGUMENT: give reason to think that if learning were datadriven then the acquirendum could not be learned without access to sentences in the lacuna. APS specification schema a. b. c. But in order to demonstrate that there is anything other than purely general learning mechanisms at work. Each of these five parts of the schema corresponds with an element in the empirical premise. ACQUISITION EVIDENCE: given reason to believe that the acquirendum does in fact become known to learners during childhood. LACUNA SPECIFICATION: identify a set of sentences such that if the learner had access to them. INACCESSIBILITY EVIDENCE: support the claim that tokens of sentences in the lacuna were not available to the learning during the acquisition process. a nativist must satisfy the following: 4.acquisition is of the “innately-primed” variety. In order to justify the claim that “[…] infants do in fact learn things for which they lack crucial evidence”. ACQUIRENDUM CHARACTERIZATION: describe in detail what is alleged to be known. a nativist must show that premise 3c is sound. In order to evaluate the presentations of APS. Pullum and Scholz define a schema (reproduced below) for the presentation of empirical evidence in support of premise 3c (the empirical premise).” Part 4a attempts to characterize the .
it is purported to have come from some innate structure. Gordon analyzed the Brown corpus (1 million words from various text sources). and he judged the frequency of irregular plural noun-compounds (like teeth-eater) to be too low for children to have acquired them on the basis of data alone. b. ACQUIRENDUM CHARACTERIZATION: only irregular (not regular) plurals may be used in first position in the formation of noun-compounds. but do not produce them with regular plurals in the first position. . APS specification for regular plurals in compounds a. Therefore..” Analyses of APS Presentations Pullum and Scholz (2002) first analyze a presentation of the APS by Gordon (1986).g. toys-eater.g. Gordon presents evidence from experiments that children between 3 and 6 years produce compound nouns with irregular plurals in the first position. one which is heavily cited in the literature. is Gordon’s presentation of the APS. Here. then. Here. 4c corresponds to the “crucial”-ness of the evidence. Pinker. mice-eater. e. rats-eater. 1994). LACUNA SPECIFICATION: the set of sentences with noun-compounds containing irregular plurals in first position. 4b corresponds to the specification of “evidence” (“lacuna” for the gaps in learning data. including in popular books (e.. and 4e is a justification that the child did in fact “learn” those “things.g. INDISPENSABILITY ARGUMENT: the acquirendum cannot be acquired without access to the lacuna.. from the perspective of the learner). within our schema for the justification of the empirical premise: 5.“things” learned (“acquirendum” for “the thing acquired”). 4d corresponds to the “lack” thereof. e. teeth-eater. c.
programs coordinator. Pullum and Scholz first point out a potential confounding element within Gordon’s study.d. e. generics-maker. parks commissioner. etc. Examples of noun-compounds with regular plurals in the leftmost (non-head) element are readily attested. The rhyming between the two pairs may be salient enough to prime a response that might otherwise not have occurred. the children are trained to respond to questions of the type What would you call an X eater? by giving them mass noun values of X (as a control. . we find even more examples: issues-oriented. etc. In any case. If we relax the constraint to include other compounds. Before diving into the criticisms related solely to the empirical premise. forms-reader. Allowing noun-compounds without hyphens (which reflect stylistic choice and are indistinguishable in running speech from those with hyphens) we find the following (again from the WSJ): drinks trolley. we find the following examples in the Penn Treebank corpus of the Wall Street Journal (WSJ): chemicals-maker. so that the children end up answering rice-eater. INACCESSIBILITY EVIDENCE: the text frequency of the lacuna (in the Brown corpus) is extremely low. Following the Noun+Verb+-er template that Gordon uses. profits-based. In the experiments. One of the mass nouns used is rice. with say past participles. This is of course a few minutes before they are then induced to produce mice-eater when posed with a similar question. ACQUISITION EVIDENCE: presented by Gordon (1986) from his experiments with the children. and securities-dealer. the primary reason for rejecting Gordon’s presentation is that the acquirendum specification (5a) is not correct. buildings inspector. citizens-sponsored. rules committee. since the issue of pluralization does not arise).
d. It has rained. It may be raining.Pullum and Scholz point out that the issue of choosing to have a plural in the first position of a compound versus having a singular is in some cases a result of style or cultural influence and not related to considerations of universal grammar. they are right to praise him for using corpora in his experiments at all. It may have been raining. c. f. e. who presents us with the problem of the auxiliary verb sequence in English: 6. h. e. in the USA.. It may rain. which is to start with a theory and then use individual grammaticality judgments to verify its correctness. NPR would use a drug problem where in the UK. since this is more than many linguists in the Chomskian tradition have done. . Pullum and Scholz (2002) go on to discuss the APS presentation of Kimball (1973: 7375). Such an approach often ignores the language that is produced “in the wild” in favor of sterile (and brittle) examples. g. Auxiliary verb sequence a. Gordon’s attempt to characterize compounding with a simple theory is an example of a general problem in generative linguistics. It is raining. b. the BBC would use a drugs problem. It may have rained. In any case. Though.g. the full account of (noun-) compounding is a complicated story. It rains. Pullum and Scholz could have criticized Gordon much more for this kind of argumentation – proceeding from (by now outdated) theory to artificially constructed examples. It has been raining.
and correct. APS specification for auxiliary sequences a. and via an innately-primed preference for simplicity in grammatical structures. the one rule hypothesis and the multi-rule hypothesis. c. they choose the simpler. LACUNA SPECIFICATION: the set of all sentences of the form T M have+en be+ing (hereafter. the single rule would have to be broken down into 3 rules: one for (M) (have + en). INDISPENSABILITY ARGUMENT: without MHBV sentences. one for (M) (be + ing). Kimball finds however very little evidence from a computerized corpus of 1 million words (granted. the arguments looks like this: 8. . Note that here parentheses indicate the optionality of the element enclosed. b. Thus. d. INACCESSIBILITY EVIDENCE: MHBV sequences are very infrequent.Kimball believes these sentences to be accurately characterized by the rule he propounds in 7: 7. and one for (have + en) (be + ing). Kimball proposes that children entertain the two hypotheses. rule. without evidence from sentences like 6h. MHBV sentences). ACQUISITION EVIDENCE: all English-speakers produce and accept MHBV sentences. Aux T (M) (have + en) (be + ing). In Pullum and Scholz’s schema for the empirical premise. not possible to learn MHBV sequence is permissible. and claims that a colleague finds very little empirical support even after 8 years of studying the problem. 40 years later we have better computational resources). e. ACQUIRENDUM CHARACTERIZATION: the rule schema (7). Kimball notes that if 6h were not grammatical.
though. namely.e. Pullum and Scholz must forgive Kimball’s lack of access to the corpora we have today. learners can be seen as learning simple subcategorization frames. then the difficulty of optional elements and rule specification goes away: If we take a sequence like may have been writing. indicating that the sequence is not uncommon even in material directed at children. Seeing the acquirendum in this way obviates the need to see all 3 auxiliaries in a single construction – if they are understood simply as a series . they can look back and say that learners aren’t actually acquiring a rule of the style presented in 7 – rather. as opposed to adjuncts. meaning complements usually fall to the right). how much positive evidence must be presented to satisfy nativists that it is sufficient to induce learning in a child through general learning mechanisms? Undermining the inaccessibility claim supports exactly what Pullum and Scholz set out to do in their article. of when enough is enough – that is.. Given the development of our understanding of syntax over the past 40 years. If. what categories are required or allowed to be paired with specific lexical items. which in this case is have (though it could have been be or write). Pullum and Scholz also criticize Kimball for mischaracterizing the acquirendum. i. have (in this auxiliary usage. for instance.As for the inaccessibility claim. which are optional. for there is an abundance of examples from novels. to shift the burden of proof back onto the nativists who would say they have already empirically demonstrated the APS. may takes a non-finite verb as a complement (complements must be present. as opposed to the have which means roughly “to possess”) takes a past participle (-en) verbal complement. in this case been (just as easily written). in this case writing. not inducing a noun or adjectival predicate) takes a present participle verb as complement. where it is an auxiliary and non-copular. and even children’s books. English is a head-initial language. auxiliaries are verbs which must take complements of a particular type. and finally been (or any form of be in this sense. i.. This raises the issue.e. newspaper text.
they are not completely charitable to Kimball. through a rich array of sensory information. and stoves. and the recombination of them is secondary. Pullum and Scholz gloss over the primary acquisition task here in favor of deriding . combining parts with certain attributes to make wholes. but they do manage to refute the inaccessibility claim as well. but it might be possible. Pullum and Scholz are right to point out the difficulties with selecting appropriate acquirenda. those drawers have knobs. However. most houses have kitchens and bedrooms. given Kimball’s outdated acquirendum. The major part of the acquisition seems to those frames and types. it is easy for children to learn the “parts” of a house. but this is a problem inherent to the progress of the field. it seems Pullum and Scholz are close to equating weirdness (in terms of a sink being in an unusual place) with ungrammaticality – isn’t ungrammaticality just where those parts are combined in an unusual way to make an uncommon (and weird) whole? This seems to be oversimplifying linguistic behavior. Learners come to know these generalizations. etc.. They claim that learning complement type selection is no different than learning about any other type of problem where parts are put together to make wholes. We can only posit as acquired those things which we understand to be present in the speaker’s knowledge at the time. They go into example of learning about rooms in a house: all houses have rooms. kitchens typically have sinks. etc. bedrooms have drawers. of course. In this way.of heads seeking complements. and they would think it strange to have a bedroom with a faucet. but subcategorization frames. Pullum and Scholz use the opportunity from their discussion of heads and complements to oversimplify the learning problem. Here. seem to be qualitatively different. Also. as we learn more about the nature of the acquired state of language. complement types. with faucets. the acquirenda may change. the single construction containing all 3 is a predictable production.
which has been cited with affection from a number of nativist sources. APS specification for anaphora with one . Nom..an outdated Chomskian theory. Pullum and Scholz point out a couple of examples refuting (i) as well. *The student of chemistry was more thoroughly prepared than the one of physics. He claims that nouns within other noun phrases cannot be replaced by one. for instance a noun phrase containing a prepositional phrase: 10. they ignore the first acquirendum and focus on the second.e. However. Baker invents a category to account for this apparent constituency. to us. Pullum and Scholz point out two acquirenda: (i) that bare nouns (e. Thus. schematizing Baker’s argument for the empirical premise as follows: 11. John has a blue glass but Alice doesn’t have one. the acquirenda seem wrong. In fact. Again. Alice could have a red glass) or simply to glass (where Alice has no glass at all).. which can be a bare noun. Consider the following sentence: 9. one may be referring to blue glass (i. Here Baker claims that one cannot refer to student since student is not a Nom constituent (because it is in a noun phrase containing a prepositional phrase). under noun phrases with prepositional phrases) cannot be the antecedents of one and (ii) that multi-word phrases of Nom type can be.g. they have refuted the empirical premise based on inaccessibility even granting the outdated acquirendum. though. Baker’s work concerns the anaphoric (referring to a pronoun which is bound to some contextual antecedent) use of one. 10 seems quite grammatical. or else an adjective-noun sequence. In 9. Pullum and Scholz (2002) next address what they consider to be a “more fully elaborated” version of the APS from Baker (1978: 413-425).
g. there is a whole class of positive evidence that Baker overlooks. e. c.” . Pragmatic inference does exactly what we want.. Given that Baker claims strongly that there is little evidence to believe that the antecedent of one can be a multi-word expression. taken from the WSJ: 12.” he says. They give the following examples. ACQUIRENDUM CHARACTERIZATION: anaphoric one may have multi-word Nom expressions as antecedents. Pullum and Scholz point out that semantic entailment is not a requirement for evidence that one refers to a multiword expression. though.a. INACCESSIBILITY EVIDENCE: Baker claims it will be an unusual set of circumstances for a learner to know that the antecedent must be the multi-word Nom. given the rarity of the construction. Multiword antecedents of one with pragmatic inference a. ACQUISITION EVIDENCE: none cited (the issue is non-trivial). “You can teach what happens in a firing episode. LACUNA SPECIFICATION: the set of utterances with anaphoric one such that the context reveals the antecedent must be the multi-word Nom and not just the bare noun (e. utterances like 9 where Alice does in fact have a red glass). Pullum and Scholz point out that it is possible that there are individuals in the linguistic community who. b. “But each one is so different that the advice may be misleading. INDISPENSABILITY ARGUMENT: learners must see multi-word antecedents to know they are possible. d. This is very similar to the vicious circularity pointed out in the original strong formulation of the APS. we have no way of knowing if they are ascribing the correct antecedent. Setting this issue aside.
in a polar interrogative. If we already have the category of a noun phrase for free. Fletcher notes the “amazing success” of Werner Forssman. as Pullum and Scholz note playfully. from more colloquial sources than the WSJ. the auxiliary verb that is moved to the beginning of the sentence is dependent on the dominance structure. Specifically.” Pullum and Scholz go on to cite a number of other examples. the antecedent is clearly the full expression firing episode. who pioneered the use of cardiac catheters in surgery by inserting one into his own body. because the bare noun episode would be pretty meaningless.b. Mr. Additionally. a chilling feat that won him a 1956 Nobel Prize in medicine. rather than the linear order. we think an acquirendum of (ii) alone is not really something that needs to be acquired. why not allow one to possibly have a noun phrase antecedent. Pullum and Scholz point out that one of the reasons this argument is regarded as strong is that it concerns pure syntax and doesn’t refer to context or subcategorization – that is. how much positive data is enough? Pullum and Scholz put the onus with the nativists. Pullum and Scholz repeat the following examples from Chomsky (1971b: 29-33): . “inserting just any kind of catheter into any part of his body would not have won Dr. it is clear that Forssman put a cardiac catheter into his own body. or any of the parts thereof? It seems to be a trivial generalization. which again leads to the question. In 12b. Forssman a Nobel. the acquirendum must be inferred from word positions alone under a data-driven account. because. In 12a. To illustrate the phenomenon. and not from recourse to meaning. Pullum and Scholz (2002) save the strongest and most widely regarded argument for innately-primed learning for last. of the sentence. On the other hand. which introduces a number of potential complications. or yes/no questions. The claim is about polar interrogatives.
. The dog that is in the corner is hungry. The acquirendum. and (ii) take the auxiliary of the main clause and move it to the front. The dog in the corner is hungry.e. c. ACQUIRENDUM CHARACTERIZATION: the structure-dependent generalization about auxiliary initial clauses (i. APS specification for auxiliary-initial clauses a. (i) take the first auxiliary in the declarative and move it to the front. b. But turning 13c into a question is informative: under (i) we get the ungrammatical 13e. Is the dog in the corner hungry? c. both of them make the same prediction. (ii)). Is the dog that is in the corner hungry? e.g.g. Auxiliary-initial examples a.13. (ii)) hypotheses make the same predictions. d. 2002): 14. b. LACUNA SPECIFICATION: the set of sentences with an auxiliary-initial clause where the initial auxiliary is not the linearly leftmost auxiliary in the declarative version of the sentence. That is because there is only one auxiliary. The support for the empirical premise is schematized below (paraphrased from Pullum and Scholz. *Is the dog that in the corner is hungry? Pullum and Scholz discuss that turning 13a into a question is uninformative: given two hypotheses. INDISPENSABILITY ARGUMENT: the lacuna is necessary because on sentences outside the lacuna the structure-independent (e. (i)) and the structureindependent (e. then is a matter of choosing hypothesis (ii). but under (ii) we get the grammatical 13d.
a few of which are reproduced below: 15. such that a person may go a lifetime without being exposed. Where’s the application Mork promised to fill out? . the two hypotheses make the same predictions. though. not that sentences from the structure-independent hypothesis are ungrammatical. This would require negative evidence. Crain and Nakayama (1987) demonstrate experimentally that children do have the structure-dependent hypothesis. since on the majority of sentences (i. ACQUISITION EVIDENCE: no attempted by Chomsky.d. those outside the lacuna). e. so we may safely concede this point and move on. Where’s the other doll that goes in there? c. Pullum and Scholz note that sentences like 13d from the lacuna will only provide evidence that sentences from the structure-dependent hypothesis are grammatical. INACCESSIBILITY EVIDENCE: no empirical evidence. but Crain and Nakayama (1987) demonstrate that children learn the acquirendum. Positive examples of the structure-dependent hypothesis a. but Chomsky asserts sentences in the lacuna are extremely rare. They point out that Chomsky claims (in Piattelli-Palmarini. Is what I’m doing in the shareholders’ best interest? b. Pullum and Scholz (rightly) concede all points except for inaccessibility. Pullum and Scholz go on to cite a tide of positive examples like 13d.e. This brings us back to the viciously circular argument of Baker and the strong version of the APS. 1980) somewhat too strongly that a speaker may go their whole life without producing an example that distinguishes between the two hypotheses. As noted.
and not one that must involve innate-priming. the inaccessibility to lacuna requirement is the one that most readily puts the burden of proof back on the nativists. The most celebrated “empirical” demonstrations of the APS. but it is readily attested in a corpus (WSJ). Pullum and Scholz have shown that in many cases that evidence may be more widely available than is commonly asserted. . or that there is not convincing evidence that what is claimed to have been acquired is actually acquired. Nativists have claimed that the empirical data is not available for many acquirenda. have shown to be lacking. Analyzing some of the most popular versions of the APS from the linguistics literature has revealed that they either mischaracterize what is acquired. 15b and 15c are not polar interrogatives. It is too stringent a criterion to require the exact type of sentence found in Chomsky’s examples. or that there actually is evidence that could potentially support a data-driven account of the acquisition of the phenomenon. as characterized by Pullum and Scholz. Therefore. they have the characteristics of the lacuna. Sentences that demonstrate the structure-dependent hypothesis for initial auxiliaries ought to be taken as the lacuna. given the infinitely generative capacity of English. Conclusion Pullum and Scholz (2002) have presented a distilled form of arguments from the poverty of the stimulus (APS). and the importance of structure over linear order. rather than the auxiliary from the relative clause. but crucially.15a may seem an unlikely utterance in the acquisition corpus of a child. It would be more convincing if Pullum and Scholz had found examples more similar to the examples Chomsky sets forth in 13. where the auxiliary is moved from the main clause to the front. Indeed. This again raises the question of how much evidence is enough for a nativist. The crucial part of the acquisition is about main clauses and auxiliaries. but we cannot hold that against them. But given modern access to corpora.
Crain. as well as mathematical learning theoretic approaches. Gordon.generative linguists ought to have a real conversation about what would be necessary for certain aspects of language to have enough examples to be learnable through data-driven methods. John P. (1978). Introduction. . Cognition 21: 73-93. Norbert and David Lightfoot (1981). NJ: Prentice-Hall. both of which linguists have shied away from in the past. London: Fontana. Englewood Cliffs. and reminded the nativists that their work is not over. The arguments from Pullum and Scholz have not demonstrated that nativism is false. References Baker. Introduction to Generative-Transformational Syntax. Level ordering in lexical development. Englewood Cliffs. (1973). Stephen and Mineharu Nakayama (1987). which have shown promising results. NJ: Prentice-Hall. but rather have given hope to linguistic empiricists. London: Longman. Noam (1971b). Kimball. Problems of Knowledge and Freedom. Hornstein. Peter (1986). Chomsky. In Explanation in Linguistics: The Logical Problem of Language Acquisition. This may involve generative linguists looking more in computational approaches to language. L. Language 63: 522-543. 9-31. Structure dependence in grammar formation. The Formal Theory of Grammar. C.
Sholz (2002). Geoffrey (1989). Sampson.) (1980). The Linguistic Review 19. 9-50. Geoffrey K. Pinker.Lightfoot. Language and Learning: The Debate Between Jean Piaget and Noam Chomsky. The Language Lottery: Toward a Biology of Grammars. David (1982a). . Empirical assessment of stimulus poverty arguments. The Language Instinct. Pullum. Sampson. Geoffrey (1999a). and Barbara C. Cambridge: MIT Press. Steven (1994). Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Piattelli-Palmarini. New York: William Morrow. Educating Eve. Massimo (ed. Language acquisition: growth or learning? Philosophical Papers 18: 203-240. London: Cassell.
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