Typological Accounts for Nominal Forms
Received: Sep 08, 2011; Revised: Oct 30, 2011; Accepted: Nov 17, 2011
Published Online: Jan 01, 2017
Various linguistic phenomena may serve a basis for the classification of languages and nominal forms make part of the criteria for the classification. In this study, two major approaches are closely compared for language typology based on nominal forms. Chierchia (1998a, b) assumes that morpho-syntactic features should be crucial in determining the denotations and grammatical categories of NPs. He suggests three classificatory categories with the notion of nominal mapping parameters. Contrastingly, the OT analysis of de Swart & Zwarts (2009, 2010) do not assume that morpho-syntactic features should be collapsed with countability and plurality. They propose several general constraints governing nominal forms and argue that different ordering of the constraints in optimality accounts for different nominal forms crosslinguistically. I have shown that the OT analysis provides an appropriate framework to categorize languages systematically.