The 93rd Annual Meeting of the Linguistic Society of America

  • Geoffrey Pullum (Presenter)

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in conference


Presented a paper titled "One hundred years of ‘generating’ languages: the prehistory of generative grammar” at the 2019 Annual meeting of the North American Association for the History of the Language Sciences in New York (part of the 93rd Annual Meeting of the Linguistic Society of America)


Generative grammars were invented by mathematical logician Emil Leon Post in research done almost 100 years ago. He called them production systems. They generate infinite sets of character strings by applying a finite set of rules, (what Chomsky would later call ‘generalized transformations’) to a finite set of initially given strings. They are fully general enough to simulate generative grammars of any vintage (up to and including ‘minimalism’). Absences of citation have long obscured this. We should not let the citational discontinuities obscure the essential conceptual continuities.

Period4 Jan 2019
Event typeConference
LocationNew York, United StatesShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational