Evidence Against the Context-Freeness of Natural Language

  • Stuart M. Shieber
Part of the Studies in Linguistics and Philosophy book series (SLAP, volume 33)


In searching for universal constraints on the class of natural languages, linguists have investigated a number of formal properties, including that of context-freeness. Soon after Chomsky’s categorization of languages into his well-known hierarchy (Chomsky, 1963), the common conception of the context-free class of languages as a tool for describing natural languages was that it was too restrictive a class — interpreted strongly (as a way of characterizing structure sets) and even weakly (as a way of characterizing string sets).


Natural Language Regular Language Computational Linguistics Subordinate Clause Defense Advance Research Project Agency 
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© D. Reidel Publishing Company 1985

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  • Stuart M. Shieber

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