November 10, 2015

Research Groups: Friday, November 13

9:30 AM - 11:00 AM
Phonetics/Phonology Group
Group discussion led by Ross Godfrey (Ph.D.): Trommer and Zimmerman (2014). Generalised mora affixation and quantity-manipulating morphology. Phonology, 31(3), 463-510.

11:00 AM - 12:30 PM
Language Variation and Change Group
Heather Burnett (postdoc) and Sali A. Tagliamonte (faculty): "Using intra-speaker variation to diagnose syntactic structure."

In this talk we argue that cross-linguistic studies of patterns of intra-speaker morphosyntactic variation can help solve longstanding puzzles associated with the syntactic structure of the expressions that are in variation. It has been long observed in the field of language variation and change (since Labov, 1966, see the recent discussion in Bresnan 2007 for syntax) that, in addition to social and general cognitive factors, the grammatical structures of synonymous linguistic expressions in a language at least partially determine the patterns of use of these expressions. This paper shows how we can exploit this connection between syntactic structure and language use to contribute to the theoretical debate concerning the syntactic analysis of negative concord sentences in Canadian French.

12:30 PM - 2:00 PM
Semantics Group
Frederick Gietz (Ph.D.): "Pragmatics for left-adjoining again."

The left-adjoining use of again adjoins obligatorily to adverbials, and exhibits very rigid behavior with respect to prosody and syntax.  In addition, the left-adjoining use is much more pragmatically restricted than the more common, right-adjoining use.  Synthesizing these facts, I hypothesize that left-adjoining again is bound by pragmatic rules which arise in relation to focus on the adverbial phrase.

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