esoteric and highly formalized rules

Sydney M Lamb lamb at OWLNET.RICE.EDU
Wed Apr 16 16:47:37 UTC 1997

On Tue, 15 Apr 1997, PAMELA PRICE KLEBAUM wrote:

>         One of the core questions linguistics asks is, how do we acquire
> our first language?  Describing that undertaking entails modeling
> languages, which entails "esoteric and highly formalized" rules. This is b)
> below.. [ref to message from Enrique Figueroa E.]

An interesting assumption -- that modeling languages entails "esoteric
and highly formalized rules".  Why do some people make this assumption?
Is there any evidence for it?  (I don't think so.)  (We do have evidence
that "highly formalized rules" provide ONE means of describing OUTPUTS of
linguistic systems.)

       --- Syd

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