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Rethinking Comparative Syntax (ReCoS)

Department of Theoretical and Applied Linguistics

Studying at Cambridge

 

Professor Ian Roberts

Professor Ian Roberts

Professor of Linguistics & Principal Investigator


Research Interests

CV and Publications

Ian Roberts is the Principal Investigator on the ReCoS project. He specialises in comparative and historical syntax, using and developing the 'principles and parameters' approach to cross-linguistic variation. In this context, he has worked on the synchronic and diachronic syntax of a wide range of Germanic, Romance and Celtic languages. He has published four research monographs in this field: The Representation of Implicit and Dethematised Subjects (1987); Verbs and Diachronic Syntax (1993); Syntactic Change (2003) with A. Roussou, and Principles and Parameters in a VSO Language: A Case Study in Welsh (2005), as well as numerous articles and a textbook Comparative Syntax (1996). Subsequent publications are Diachronic Syntax (2007) and a six-volume edited collection Comparative Grammar: Critical Concepts (2007). The Final-over-Final Constraint (2017) with M. Sheehan, T. Biberauer,  and A. Holmberg, and The Wonders of Language, or How to Make Noises and Influence People (2017) are his most recent publications.

Key Publications

2017

Roberts, I. The Wonders of Language, or How to Make Noises and Influence People. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Sheehan, M., Biberauer, T., A. Holmberg & I. Roberts. The Final over Final Constraint. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Ledgeway, A. & I. Roberts (eds.) The Cambridge Handbook of Historical Syntax. Cambridge: Cambridge Universtity Press.

Roberts, I. (ed.) The Oxford Handbook of Universal Grammar. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Biberauer, Theresa, Anders Holmberg, Ian Roberts, Michelle Sheehan. (2017). Empirical evidence for the Final-over-Final Condition. M.Sheehan, T. Biberauer, I. Roberts, A. Holmberg (eds). The Final-over-Final Condition. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press

Roberts, I. 2017. Uniformitarianism. In A. Ledgeway & I. Roberts (eds) The Cambridge Handbook of Historical Syntax. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 338-359.

Roberts, I. 2017. Inertia. In A. Ledgeway & I. Roberts (eds) The Cambridge Handbook of Historical Syntax. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 425-445.

2016

Roberts, I. 2016. Object Clitics. In A. Ledgeway & M. Maiden (eds) The Oxford Guide to the Romance Languages. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 968-801.

2015

Biberauer, T. & I. Roberts. 2015. The Clausal Hierarchy, Features and Parameters. In U. Shlonsky (ed) Beyond Functional Sequence: The Cartography of Syntactic Structures, Volume 10. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 295-313.

2014

Aboh, E., M.-T. Guasti & I. Roberts. 2014. Locality. Oxford/New York: Oxford       University Press.

Biberauer, T., A. Holmberg & I. Roberts. 2014. A Syntactic Universal and its      Consequences. Linguistic Inquiry 45:169-225.

Biberauer, T., A. Holmberg, I. Roberts & M. Sheehan. 2014. Complexity in comparative syntax: the view from modern parametric    theory. In F. Newmeyer & L. Preston (eds) Measuring Grammatical Complexity. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 103-127.

Holmberg, A. & I. Roberts. 2014. Parameters and the three factors of language design. In C. Picallo (ed) Linguistic Variation in the Minimalist Framework. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Roberts, I. 2014a. Taraldsen’s Generalisation and Diachronic Syntax: Two Ways to Lose Null Subjects. In P. Svenonius (ed) Functional Structure from Top to Toe: The Cartography of Syntactic Structures, Volume 9. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 115-148.

Roberts, I. 2014b. Syntactic Change. In A. Carnie, D. Siddiqi & Y. Sato (eds) Routledge Handbook of Syntax. London, Routledge, pp. 391-408.

Roberts, I. 2014c. Subject clitics and macroparameters. In P. Benincà, A. Ledgeway & N. Vincent (eds) Diachrony and Dialects: Grammatical change in the dialects of Italy. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 177-201.

Roberts, I. 2014d. The Mystery of the Overlooked Discipline: Modern Syntactic Theory and Cognitive Science. Revue Roumaine de Linguistique 58:151-178.

Watumull, J., Hauser, M., Hornstein, N. & I. Roberts. 2014. On Recursion. Frontiers in Psychology 4:1017.