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The Analysis of Verbal Behavior

, Volume 11, Issue 1, pp 77–88 | Cite as

Comments on Skinner’s grammar

  • John H. Mabry
Article

Abstract

The strong tradition of “school room” grammars may have had a negative influence on the reception given a functional analysis of verbal behavior, both within and without the field of behavior analysis. Some of the failings of those traditional grammars, and their largely prescriptive nature were outlined through reference to other critics, and conflicting views. Skinner’s own treatment of grammatical issues was presented, emphasizing his view of a functional unit and his use of the autoclitic and intraverbal functions to describe alternatives to a formal or structural analysis. Finally, the relevance of stimulus control variables to some recurring questions about verbal behavior and, specifically grammar, were mentioned.

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Copyright information

© Association of Behavior Analysis International 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • John H. Mabry
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Psychology CB #3270University of North CarolinaChapel HillUSA

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