Geeking Out on Syntax

“Judging” grammaticality through software: MiniJudge. (Via Jean Crawford, Starr Linguist)

As a complete outsider to the minimalist program (and to those language sciences which focus on syntax), my perception has often been that judgements of grammaticality relied too heavily on introspection by native speakers. Proponents of these generative theories often talk of “instincts” or “intuitions” for those judgements that native speakers are able to make unconsciously and that non-native speakers have a hard time making. Maybe using software for those judgements would take the generative methodology out of introspective mode.

As a linguistic anthropologist, I just wish linguists and other language scientists could talk to each other.