Sentences in Remembrance of Things Past: Entry Two

Having thumbed through more or less germane critical essays and excerpts all summer, writing piecemeal as I went, I was very surprised last week when — with the sudden realization that I must bring it all together — I discovered that my project was already more or less done. I admit that I was immensely pleased with this development, although my paper as things currently stand has the undesirable tendency to, well, sprawl. Writing for a few moments each morning until one grows weary of it is, evidently, a surefire way to write way too much. I’m now faced with the task of editing, the main question being, is it unconscionably long? Do I need to bring in a chainsaw or just some pruners? At the same time, I am still faced with the issue I addressed in my last post. I’ve sketched my phrase structure trees on twenty-some notebook pages, complete with ink blotches and hastily made corrections. Since I still can’t display these electronically, this is essentially the best I can do — everyone will have to pardon my handwriting, but I think the page numbers I provide for each sentence should give the reader reference to a much cleaner version of the text. Now I just need to scan these in and hope they remain as legible as possible. If anyone has questions I am of course delighted to address them.


  1. Thomas, congrats on having your project going really well. I’m really looking forward to seeing it and your diagrams – any chance you could upload one to the blog if you have a chance? I don’t know if that’s easy to do or not. What kind of general observations have you been noting? And I definitely feel you on the whole conflict between writing everything and then having to edit away at what you’ve been working out – that’s the stage of the game I’m in right now. I’m looking forward to seeing your paper when it’s all done.


  2. Hey, just saw your comment, literally a month too late. I uploaded a sample picture, but it’s for such a short sentence that it doesn’t really indicate the scope of the others. As for my general observations, I posit some theoretical means for looking at the structure/style of the novel and then see how well they can be applied.

  3. mwschilling says:

    First, congratulations on taking-on such a large endeavor; being a Linguistics major, I know how complicated phase trees of even simple sentences can potentially get, so I cannot even begin to fathom how long it took you to make phase trees for sentences pages-long! 😛 Second, congrats even more for accomplishing your goals! I am really interested in seeing your results and possibly reading your paper, as syntax is an area of linguistics I am interested in but have not yet had much of a chance to study. I am hoping to take a Syntax course, though, next semester with Professor Reed. What syntactical theory have you been applying throughout your project? Have you found much about the structure of the translation, and/or has a lot of what you have found been based on the original text?