Hey syntax, where's my carrot?

🕑 5 min • 👤 Thomas Graf • 📆 January 31, 2020 in Discussions • 🏷 syntax, textbooks, teaching

Last week I blogged a bit about syntax textbooks. One question I didn’t ask there, for fear of completely derailing the post, is what should actually be in a syntax textbook. There’s a common complaint I hear from students about syntax classes, and it’s that syntax courses are one giant bait-and-switch. They’re right, and it’s also true for syntax textbooks.

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Syntax textbook recommendations

🕑 6 min • 👤 Thomas Graf • 📆 January 22, 2020 in Discussions • 🏷 syntax, textbooks, teaching

Recently I found in my inbox an inquiry from a student who wants to pick up syntax on their own and would like to get some textbook recommendations. I happily complied, but I’m actually not all that qualified to give such recommendations. It’s been a long time since I’ve read a syntax textbook. I have never taught a grad-level syntax introduction. At the undergraduate level I got to teach syntax twice at the very beginning of my Stony Brook career, and never again since then — I can only surmise that what I did in those courses was too radical for the linguistic deep state to tolerate. But the prestigious Outdex readership includes at least some syntacticians, so why not crowdsource the recommendations?

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