November 3, 2014

Report from NWAV 43

New Ways of Analyzing Variation 43 was held in Chicago from October 23rd to 26th, co-hosted by two campuses of the University of Illinois.

There was a strong showing from the University of Toronto. Current department members who presented talks, posters, and/or workshops were: Marisa Brook (Ph.D.), LeAnn Brown (Ph.D.), Chris Harvey (Ph.D.), Derek Denis (Ph.D.), Shayna Gardiner (Ph.D.), Matt Hunt Gardner (Ph.D.), Michael Iannozzi (BA), Naomi Nagy (faculty), Katherine Rehner (faculty), Sali A. Tagliamonte (Ph.D.), and Anne-José Villeneuve (faculty). Others in attendance included Paulina Lyskawa (MA), Ruth Maddeaux (Ph.D.), and Jim Smith (Ph.D.).

Alumni who were involved: Claire Childs (former visiting student), Alexandra D'Arcy (Ph.D. 2005), Emilie LeBlanc (MA 2014), Shannon Mooney (MA 2012), Nicole Rosen (Ph.D. 2007), and Maddie Shellgren (MA 2011).

Claire, Ruth, and Matt attending a talk. (Photo courtesy of Sali A. Tagliamonte.)

We were delighted to learn that Shayna's talk on variable possessive markers in Ancient Egyptian won an Honorable Mention for best student paper, and LeAnn's poster on perceptual cues to sexual orientation won an Honorable Mention for best student poster. Congratulations to Shayna and LeAnn!

One of the many highlights of the conference was a tightly-packed room paying tribute to William Labov on the occasion of his retirement from the University of Pennsylvania. Some 350 sociolinguists were in attendance to help sing along with a musical celebration, and Naomi Nagy presented Bill with a Lifetime Achievement Award on behalf of the NWAV 43 organizing committee.

NWAV 43 was a great conference and a wonderful precursor to NWAV 44, which will be co-hosted by the U of T and York and held at Hart House from October 22nd to 25th of next year.

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