December 15, 2018

New paper: Jurgec and Bjorkman (2018)

Peter Jurgec (faculty) and Bronwyn Bjorkman (former postdoc, now at Queen's University) have a paper now published in Phonology, 35(4): "Indexation to stems and words."

This paper presents an extension of indexed constraints, such that they can apply not only to individual morphemes, but also to potentially complex constituents such as the stem. This modification allows us to capture a class of long-distance morphologically derived environment effects (MDEEs) that have been previously unexplained. MDEEs typically involve an exceptional phonological pattern that is lost under affixation. Formally, MDEEs are predicted if complex constituents such as stems are treated as lexically exceptional only when every morpheme contained within them is independently exceptional. This approach further predicts asymmetries between bare roots and affixed words, between roots and affixes, and between inflected and derived words. All other things being equal, the first of each pair is more likely to be exceptional in more contexts.

December 14, 2018

Faculty/staff holiday lunch

Our faculty and staff enjoyed a holiday lunch at Her Father's Cider Bar and Kitchen on Friday, December 14. Thanks to the restaurant and its employees for their hospitality (and for taking the photo!).

Clockwise around the table from left: Sali A. Tagliamonte, Jack Chambers, Yoonjung Kang, Naomi Nagy, Phil Monahan, Barend Beekhuizen, Jessamyn Schertz, Cristina Cuervo, Susana Béjar, Aleksei Nazarov, Marisa Brook, Elaine Gold, Arsalan Kahnemuyipour, Nathan Sanders, Jennifer McCallum, Diane Massam, and Derek Denis.

December 10, 2018

Research Groups: Week of December 10-14

Wednesday, December 12, 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM, Bissell Building 113
Morphology Reading Group

Thursday, December 13, 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM, SS 1086
Language Variation and Change Group
Practise talks for LSA/ADS/other conferences held alongside.

December 7, 2018

Congratulations, Emily!

Emily Clare successfully defended her doctoral dissertation, "Dynamicity in speech perception," on Friday, December 7, 2018. The committee included Jessamyn Schertz (supervisor), Yoonjung Kang, Phil Monahan, Elizabeth Johnson, Nathan Sanders, and external examiner Meghan Clayards (McGill University). Congratulations, Dr. Clare!

Elizabeth, Nathan, Meghan, Emily, Jessamyn, Yoonjung, and Phil. (Photo by Jennifer McCallum.)

December 6, 2018

Workshop: New Perspectives on Mental State Attribution

The Department of Philosophy is hosting a workshop, New Perspectives on Mental State Attribution, early next week. This will be taking place at the Jackman Humanities Building (Room 100) on Monday, December 10, and Tuesday, December 11, from 9 AM to 5 PM both days. The program features a mix of guest speakers giving in-depth presentations. Of particular interest to the linguistics community are the two talks on the Tuesday afternoon, as follows:

2:00 PM to 3:30 PM:
Elizabeth Bogal-Allbritten (University of Gothenburg):
"Building attitudes in the grammar."

4:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Rachel Dudley (École normale supérieure):
"Pragmatic effects in child's understanding of attitude verbs."

December 5, 2018

Iranian Languages Workshop

Our department has a cluster of scholars keenly interested in the languages of Iran. On top of that, this semester's JAL401: Field Linguistics class taught by Suzi Lima (faculty) collectively investigated Gilaki, an Indo-Iranian language spoken in the northwest of the country. In other to showcase their research, we will be holding a workshop on Iranian languages: Thursday, December 6, from 10 AM through 3 PM in the department lounge. All departmental members are encouraged to attend!

Arsalan Kahnemuyipour (faculty):
"Everything I know about Gilaki."

Gregory Antono (BA):
"Allomorphy in Gilaki: An Optimality Theoretic approach."

Crystal Chen (BA):
"Adjectival order in Gilaki."

Sahar Taghipour (Ph.D.):
"Definiteness in Laki: its distribution and properties."

Rosie Webb (BA):
"Modifier reduplication in Gilaki."

Kristina Springer (BA):
"The morphophonological analysis of verb affixation in Gilaki."

Jida Jaffan (MA):
"One way and the other: assessing the origins of Arabic and Gilaki loanwords based on the undergone linguistic processes."

Koorosh Ariyaee (Ph.D.):
"Loanword adaptation in Persian."

Liam Donohue (MA):
"Locating objects in space and time: An analysis of temporal-spatial copular constructions in Gilaki."

Breanna Pratley (BA):
"Distribution of active and passive constructions in Gilaki."

December 4, 2018

Research Groups: Friday, December 7

Note that the Fieldwork Group meeting this week is cancelled.

10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Language Variation and Change Research Group
Group discussion: Lewis, Mark (2018). A critique of the principle of error correction as a theory of social change. Language in Society, 47(3), 325-346. And an overview of the Journal of English Linguistics, 46(3), on practical strategies for opposing linguistic discrimination.

11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Syntax Group
Nico Baier (McGill University): "Unifying anti-agreement and wh-agreement."
In this talk, I investigate the sensitivity of φ-agreement to features typically associated with Ā-extraction, including those related to wh-questioning, relativization, focus and topicalization. This phenomenon has been referred to as anti-agreement (Ouhalla 1993) or wh-agreement (Chung and Georgopoulos 1988; Georgopoulos 1991; Chung 1994) in the literature. While anti-agreement is commonly held to result from constraints on the Ā-movement of agreeing DPs, I argue that it reduces to an instance of wh-agreement, or the appearance of particular morphological forms in the presence of Ā-features. I develop a unified account of these Ā-sensitive φ-agreement effects in which they arise from the ability of φ-probes to copy both φ-features and Ā-features in the syntax. In the morphological component, partial or total impoverishment may apply to feature bundles containing both φ- and Ā-features, deleting some or all of the φ-features. Impoverishment blocks insertion of an otherwise appropriate, more highly specified agreement exponent.

December 3, 2018

LIN362 poster session

The students of LIN362: Historical Linguistics, taught by Aleksei Nasarov (faculty), will be presenting their final projects in the form of a poster session in the department lounge on Tuesday, December 4, from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM. All department members are encouraged to attend!

December 1, 2018

Congratulations, Peter!

Peter Jurgec (faculty) has been awarded an Erasmus+ Mobility Grant, which provides considerable funding for inter-institutional exchange. We will be sending a graduate student from our department to visit Slovenia next autumn; a graduate student from Ljubljana will visit us at the same time. Two of our faculty members will be visiting Slovenia (and vice versa) for a week each sometime in the next two years. We anticipate that the grant will further strengthen our department's interests in Slavic languages from a variety of perspectives and approaches. Congratulations to Peter on the recognition and on opening up this tremendously valuable opportunity for all of us!