Parsing with Minimalist Grammars and prosodic trees


Advances in the syntactic parsing of written language have proceeded apace in the last few decades, but much less progress has been made in the syntactic parsing of spoken language. Here, we address one question important for such progress: how can we bring prosody in to inform syntactic parsing of spoken language? We identify and take on two key challenges: (i) explicitly defining aspects of the syntax–prosody interface, including prosodic trees, and (ii) modeling distinct contributions of syntax to conditioning prosodic events, including aspects other than relations between syntactic and prosodic domain edges, such as prosodic reflexes of spell-out. We demonstrate a proof-of-concept implementation of simultaneous (post-)syntactic and prosodic parsing of a Samoan utterance, with syntactic parsing informed by prosody, and prosodic parsing informed by syntax.

Minimalist Parsing
Kristine M. Yu
Kristine M. Yu
Associate Professor

Linguist @ UMass Amherst