Lectures in the Minimalist Program: Syntheses & Exegeses
Joseph Galasso
January 2022

Abstract: This paper ‘Exegeses & Syntheses of the Program’ (‘ESP-paper’) attempts to broadly sketch out the leading tenants of Chomsky’s 1995 Minimalist Program (MP). The paper comes to consider the progression of ‘Merge to Move’, beginning with the principles of locality which operate over an array of Binding constraints, taking as the first instance Combine members (a, b) (an external merge), and then on to establishing an unordered Set {a, b}, and then to a local Move operation (internal merge) which establishes an ordered Pair {a, {a, b}}. From these sequences of external to internal merge-operations, an array of syntactic phenomena come into view, each of which enters some form of an explanatory equation, as argued for by minimalist pursuits. Other topics include Merge over Move, Phase-base theory, Light verb constructs, VP-shells, Principles of economy of movement, and Reasons for movement. The ESP paper was written as a graduate-student guide to issues surrounding MP. Finally, as a broad sweeping ‘pedagogical device’, we peer into myriad aspects behind Lasnik’s ‘Anti-locality’ Condition. What does ‘locality’ exactly mean here (c-command)? How is it that adjacency is banned from recursive syntax (X-bar)? The condition stipulates that If an item gets displaced (internal merge), it cannot move into its existing phrase, but rather must expand a higher/functional phrase. How does this condition effect movement (e.g., wh-movement, head-to-head movement) regarding ‘Merge over Move’, as well as notions of transfer/spell-out involving phrasal projection? Lasnik & Saito: If head movement doesn’t enhance and achieve any new configuration, or is too short and superfluous, then the movement is barred. (See p. 19 herein (P-10)).
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Reference: lingbuzz/006333
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keywords: minimalist program, syntax, syntax
previous versions: v2 [January 2022]
v1 [November 2021]
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