meta- +‎ theoretical


metatheoretical ‎(not comparable)

  1. Of or pertaining to metatheory, the theory of theories
    • 1988, Andrew Radford, Transformational grammar: a first course, Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, page 122:
      OK – I can hear you objecting – I can see how this 'no crossing branches'
      constraint can be made to work mechanically, but what on earth is the point
      of it? Why should it matter whether branches can or cannot cross? A good
      question (if you asked it for the right reasons, and not just because you're be-
      ginning to get exasperated with Syntax!) Well, the motivation behind this con-
      straint is essentially as follows: on general metatheoretical grounds (the desire
      to develop a maximally constrained theory which provides a plausible basis
      for developing a model of language acquisition), we want to restrict the class
      of P-markers which qualify as 'possible natural language sentence-structures'
      as narrowly as possible, and rule out as many 'impossible' structures as we can.
    • 2008, The Logical Structure of International Trade Theory, “Erkenntnis”, in (Please provide the title of the work), volume 69, number 2, DOI:10.1007/s10670-008-9110-5:
      In conclusion I will evaluate the gains achieved by formalising ITT from a metatheoretical point of view.


  • theory-external


  • theory-internal

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