Parsing in the Minimalist Program: On SOV Languages and Relativization
Canadian Journal of Linguistics
This paper examines computational issues in the processing of SOV languages in the probe-goal framework, a theory in the Minimalist Program (MP). A generative theory that seeks to minimize search, such as the probe-goal model, provides a strong linguistic basis for the investigation of efficient parsing architecture. For parsing, two main design challenges present themselves: (1) how to limit search while incrementally recovering structure from input without the benefit of a pre-determined
... pre-determined lexical array, and (2) how to come up with a system that not only correctly resolves parsing ambiguities in accordance with empirical data but does so with mechanisms that are architecturally justified. We take as our starting point an existing probe-goal parser with features that allows it to compute syntactic representation without recourse to derivation history search. We extend this parser to handle pre-nominal relative clauses of the sort found in SOV languages. In doing so we tie together and provide a unified computational account of facts on possessor (and non-possessor) relativization and processing preferences in Turkish, Japanese and Korean.