At the time the Chomskyan paradigm was proposed, it was a radical break from the more informal approaches prevalent at the time, and it drew attention to all the cognitive complexities involved in becoming competent at speaking and understanding language. But at the same time that theories such as Chomsky’s allowed us to see new things, they also blinded us to other aspects of language.

In linguistics and allied fields, many researchers are becoming ever more dissatisfied with a totally formal language approach such as universal grammar — not to mention the empirical inadequacies of the theory.