FAQ: Generative & Universal Grammar


The questions and answers below are to explain on my grammar approach regarding the Universal Grammar by Noam Chomsky. His work has been of important reference in my language activity generally. However, I invented and began building my method long before I ever heard about Mr. Chomsky.

1. Is there literally a universal grammar, to learn any language of choice?

A uniform grammar for all languages in the world is impossible. I am not aware of any such postulate by Mr. Chomsky. His grammar tells what principles many languages have in common, owing to human inborn capability for language.

My grammar offers cognitive variables one can learn. We do not need to hold them for inborn. The variables refer to a process that all natural languages have, spatialization, but they are not universal.

Feel welcome to read,
Grammar — Why think about space?
Grammatical Aspects or cognitive variables

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2. Are there actually Language Acquisition Devices in human brains and can brains be programmed?

Linguistically, a device may be something devised, but also a faculty that devises. This latter meaning might apply to Mr. Chomsky’s theory best.

I use a term as the human language faculty, not the LAD. Language and speech are not only the Broca or Wernicke areas. Except impediment, people hear, see, and feel, when speaking; people can talk about memories or imagine the future. The faculty works in the brain entire and it cannot be programmed. Biological properties of human neural matter do not allow programming as on artificial intelligence.

Feel welcome to read:
1. Neurophysiology of feedback
Grammar is always a project
Human brains, parameters, and devices

3. Could language be a result of genetic mutation?

Mr. Chomsky has used the word mutation, speaking about language as possibly a result of human evolution.

My sense for evolving is to work out, gradually achieve, or devise. To compare childhood, adolescence, and adulthood, the DNA retains identity in good shape, though much may change in the way the human being speaks and writes. This lifespan spontaneous evolution was most probably part in shaping American English. I never use the term mutation with regard to language.

Feel welcome to read,
2. The role of feedback in language learning
American English ― where from?

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4. Is there one decisive or definitive grammar we could call “the true grammar” that is complete or irrefutable, in terms of principles or neural models?

No, there is no such grammar course, theory, or book, and it is not likely there ever is going to be.

Natural language learning and use requires the human person. This means there are actually as many grammar language faculties as there are language users. There is no “mathematical”, “purely functional”, or “strictly logical” brain connectivity to allow making rules for everyone, even if within just one natural language.

It always depends on the learner if an approach to grammar works, also when the grammatical matter is supported by scholarly traditions. Feel welcome to read about “stative verbs”:
3. The role of feedback in language use

5. How could spatialization be generative?

Prescriptive grammars offer rules for particular contexts. The rules mostly base on examples from language use.

Generative grammars base on language use too, but their purpose is to present regularities the language user independently can control. Mr. Chomsky’s grammar provides parameters. My grammar provides cognitive variables, for skill that works in real life. Let us consider two facts.

Fact One
There is not and there cannot be a grammar rule to tell whether we want to say that we live somewhere, we are living, have lived, or we have been living somewhere. Whenever we speak, we take up own resolves, to express own thought.

Fact Two
All along, we people live ON Earth. We usually view lands or seas as extents. We give at least psychological borders to areas IN which we are. We perceive routes and ways TO places. We happen to be AT landmarks and places.

Such are human natural variables for space, in English. If we employ these variables for grammar, they become generative. We name them variables not because they would change often, but for the fact that it is the human person to decide what variable he or she a given moment prefers, and even very similar contexts may bring different, yet equally correct results. Feel welcome to read:
Grammar Weblog
Grammatical Aspects mapped cognitively

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