Merge and Move as costly operations

H. Broekhuis, W.G. Klooster

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This article argues that, contrary to what is claimed by Chomsky (1995), the operation Merge (= external merge) is not inherently more economical than the operation Move (= internal merge), and that the former therefore does not necessarily block the application of the latter. This claim makes it possible to assume that the computational system has free access to the lexicon and thus to eliminate the notion of a numeration. Of course, we need some criterion to decide which derivations are in competition and we will therefore adopt Grimshaw’s (1997) claim that this is simply a matter of meaning. We will show not only that the notion of a numeration is superfluous but also that it actually gives rise to empirically wrong results.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155-182
Number of pages27
JournalRevista Virtual de Estudos da Linguagem
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2010


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