August 30, 2019

TWPL 41: Proceedings of MOT 2019

The 41st volume of Toronto Working Papers in Linguistics (TWPL 41) has now been released; it contains a range of papers from the Montréal-Ottawa-Toronto Workshop in Phonology/Phonetics (MOT 2019), which took place here in March, co-hosted by us and by York University. Many thanks to those whose articles appear in this volume, to incoming editor Pocholo Umbal (Ph.D.), and - especially - to outgoing editor Ruth Maddeaux (Ph.D.), whose prodigious efforts have underlain the TWPL revival since 2015-2016. Well done, all!

August 29, 2019


UK Language Variation and Change (UKLVC) 12 is taking place in London, England, from September 3 through 5, co-hosted by Queen Mary University of London and University College London.

Naomi Nagy (faculty), Timothy Gadanidis (Ph.D.), and Joyce Woo (BA) are presenting:
"Covariation in heritage Cantonese in Toronto."

Former postdoc Heather Burnett (Centre national de la recherche scientifique) is part of a presentation with Andrea Beltrama (University of Paris 7-Diderot) and Stephanie Solt (Leibniz-Zentrum Allgemeine Sprachwissenschaft Berlin):
"The effect of precision and context on social perception."

Former visiting scholar Claire Childs (University of York):
"Ripping open the envelope of variation: Stative have (got) and auxiliary-/negative-contraction in British English."

August 28, 2019

Congratulations, Patrick!

Patrick Murphy defended his doctoral dissertation, "Listening to writers and riders: Partial contrast and the perception of Canadian raising," on Wednesday, August 28. On the committee were Phil Monahan (supervisor), J. K. Chambers, Jessamyn Schertz, Yoonjung Kang, Nathan Sanders, and external examiner Kathleen Currie Hall (University of British Columbia). Congratulations, Dr. Murphy!

August 22, 2019


Our Mississauga campus is hosting a workshop on Saturday, September 7: Building Synergies between Psychology, Language Studies, and Computer Science (PsyLinCS UTM), organised by Barend Beekhuizen (faculty), Craig Chambers (faculty), Emily Clare (Ph.D. 2018), Elizabeth Johnson (faculty), and Jessamyn Schertz (faculty).

The aim of this workshop is to showcase existing work and promote new collaborations in research at the intersection of the fields of Psychology, Linguistics, and Computer Science. Along with keynote talks, the workshop will include oral and poster presentations by workshop attendees.

The invited speakers are Suzanne Stevenson (faculty, Department of Computer Science) and Bob McMurray (University of Iowa). Note that attendance is free but anyone aiming to attend is asked to RSVP by the end of the day on Sunday the 25th.

August 16, 2019

Julie in Guatemala

Julie Doner (Ph.D. 2019) has just returned from the Guatemala Field Station run by the University of Maryland. With the four-week K'iche' Language School and Field Research Program, Julie and a number of colleagues completed two weeks of K'iche' language classes and two weeks of research.

Julie and her host family.

Julie and several of the other students in traditional Mayan clothes.

Julie giving a talk about her work (in Spanish!).

Doing elicitation.

August 11, 2019

Research Groups: Week of August 12-16

Wednesday, August 14, 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM in SS 560A
Syntax Group
Bridget Copley (Centre national de la recherche scientifique/Université Paris 8) presenting joint work with Heidi Harley (University of Arizona): "What would it take to tame the verbal Hydra?"
Like the mythological Hydra, prominent theories of the syntax-semantics interface in the verb phrase boast multiple verbal heads, either in parallel (Folli and Harley 2005a, 2005b), or in series (Ramchand 2008). In either case, the need for syntactic heads to select appropriate lexical roots requires that a considerable amount of information is duplicated between the lexicon and the syntax. In this paper we hypothesize a single unified verbal head for dynamic predicates, with the aim of reducing the selection problem to ordinary type-driven semantic composition. To construct the denotation of the unified verbal head, we adopt two recent ontological innovations to the theory of event structure: the use of degree arguments to represent change (Hay et al. 1999, Kennedy and McNally 1999, Kennedy and Levin 2008, Kennedy 2012) and the use of force arguments to represent energy (Copley and Harley 2015). For the single-head analysis to work for major predicate classes and basic modifiers, we find that the tweaks to compositional theory that are needed are relatively minor, and raise interesting questions about the relationship between roots and structures.

August 10, 2019

Report from ICPhS 2019

The International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS 2019) has just wrapped up in Melbourne, Australia. Thanks to Na-Young Ryu (Ph.D. 2019, now at Pennsylvania State University) for this photo of several U of T folks!

Connie Ting (MA 2018), Lisa Sullivan (Ph.D.), Yoonjung Kang (faculty), Na-Young Ryu (Ph.D. 2019, now at Pennsylvania State University), Kiranpreet Nara (Ph.D.), Alexei Kochetov (Ph.D.), and Kiranpreet's poster!

August 4, 2019

ICPhS 2019

This year's International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS 2019) is taking place in Melbourne, Australia, from August 5 through 9. Our current departmental members and alumni are very well-represented, and across a range of subfields that intersect with phonetics:

Alexei Kochetov (faculty), Laura Colantoni (faculty), Yoonjung Kang (faculty), and Jeffrey Steele (faculty):
"Linguopalatal contact differences between /n/ and /t/ across six languages."

Yoonjung Kang (faculty), Na-Young Ryu (Ph.D. 2019, now at Pennsylvania State University), and Suyeon Yun (former postdoc, now at Ewha Womans University):
"Contrastive hyperarticulation of vowels in two dialects of Korean."

Alexei Kochetov (faculty) and Kiranpreet Nara (Ph.D.), with colleague Matthew Faytak (University of California, Los Angeles):
"Manner differences in the Punjabi dental-retroflex contrast: An ultrasound study of time-series data."

Na-Young Ryu (Ph.D. 2019, now at Pennsylvania State University) and Yoonjung Kang (faculty):
"Web-based high variability phonetic training on L2 coda identification."

Alexei Kochetov (faculty), Paul Arsenault (Ph.D. 2012, now at Tyndale University College), and Jan Heegård Petersen (University of Copenhagen):
"A preliminary acoustic investigation of Kalasha retroflex (rhotic) vowels."

Alexei Kochetov (faculty) with Mayuki Matsui (University of Amsterdam):
"Laryngeal coarticulation in two types of devoicing: An electroglottographic study of Russian and English."

Alexei Kochetov (faculty) with Jason Shaw (Yale University) and Karthik Durvasula (Michigan State University):
"The temporal basis of complex segments."

Angelika Kiss (Ph.D.), with Roger Yu-Hsiang Lo (University of British Columbia) and Maxime Tulling (New York University):
"The prosodic properties of the Cantonese sentence-final particles aa1 and aa3 in rhetorical wh-questions."

Maida Percival (Ph.D.) has a poster:
"Contextual variation in the acoustics of Hul'q'umi'num' ejective stops."

Juli Cebrian (Ph.D. 2002, now at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona), with Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona colleagues Zhao Liu and Celia Gorba:
"Effects of learning an additional language on VOT perception."

Nicole Rosen (Ph.D. 2007, now at the University of Manitoba) with Sky Onosson (University of Victoria) and Lanlan Li (University of Manitoba):
"Ethnolinguistic differentiation and the Canadian Shift."

Nicole Rosen (Ph.D. 2007) with Jesse Stewart (University of Saskatchewan), Michele Pesch-Johnson (University of Manitoba) and Olivia Sammons (University of Alberta):
"VOT in Michif."

Phil Howson (Ph.D. 2018, now at the University of Oregon) with Melissa Redford (University of Oregon):
"Listener preference is for reduced determiners that anticipate the following noun."

Gloria Mellesmoen (MA 2016, now at the University of British Columbia) and Marianne Huijsmans (University of British Columbia):
"The relationship between pronunciation and orthography: Using acoustic analysis as a practical illustration of ʔayʔaǰuθəm (Comox-Sliammon) vowel quality."

Gloria Mellesmoen (MA 2016, now at the University of British Columbia) with Molly Babel (University of British Columbia):
"Perceptual adaptation to stereotyped accents in audio-visual speech."