News

December 7, 2019

This week, Larry Hyman will be traveling to Japan to give an invited talk at the Word Prosody and Sentence Prosody Conference at the National Institute of Japanese Language and Linguistics. The title of the talk is Prosodic asymmetries in nominal vs. verbal phrases in Bantu.

This week, Dasha Kavitskaya will be traveling to Scotland to give a plenary talk at the Fourth Edinburgh Symposium on Historical Phonology. The title of the 2-part talk is “Conditions on sound change: precepts and propositions”.

December 6, 2019

In and around the linguistics department in the next (RRR) week:

  • Syntax and Semantics Circle and Phorum- Friday Dec 6 - Dwinelle 1303 - 3-4:30pm
    Larry HymanProsodic Asymmetries in Nominal vs. Verbal Phrases in Bantu
  • Berkeley Language Center Lecture Series - Friday Dec 6 - B-4 Dwinelle Hall - 3-5pm
    Presentations of Instructional Development Research Projects, including Dmetri Hayes on Teaching Karuk and Yurok Online: A Story of Pain and Healing
  • Sociolinguistics Lab at Berkeley (SLaB) - Tuesday Dec 10 - Dwinelle 3401 - 3:30-5pm
    Annie Helms: Generating Continua in TANDEM-STRAIGHT   (This workshop is designed to familiarize linguists with the application TANDEM-STRAIGHT, which can be used to create a continuum from two endpoint audio files. The resulting continua can be used as stimuli for discrimination and identification tasks in speech perception experiments.)

December 5, 2019

Peter Jenks sends a photo of the happy aftermath of Kenny Baclawski's successful dissertation defense yesterday morning:

December 4, 2019

Zach O'Hagan sends the following set of updates from the Survey of California and Other Indian Languages:

  • Madeline Bossi archived a new collection on Scottish Gaelic (Celtic; Scotland), based on her 2019 fieldwork, including sound recordings of elicitation sessions and texts, field notes, and photographs.
  • Zachary O'Hagan added 9 new file bundles to his extant collection on Caquinte (Arawakan; Peru), based on a short field trip in July, including sound recordings of elicitation sessions and video recordings of traditional stories.
  • Wesley dos Santos added 25 new file bundles to his extant collection on Kawahiva (Tupí-Guaraní; Brazil), based on fieldwork on three varieties, Juma, Karipuna, and Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau, from 2017 to 2019. The audio and video recordings include elicitation sessions, many texts and conversations, and songs, alongside field notes, photographs, and electroglottagraphy (EGG) work!  
  • Nicholas Rolle (PhD 2018) archived a new collection on Esan (Edoid; Nigeria), based on many years of research, including in-situ fieldwork, that began in a Toronto field methods course over a decade ago! The collection includes sound recordings of elicitation sessions and texts, field notes (still done with a Livescribe Smartpen), and photographs. He also added 15 new file bundles to an extant collection on Izon (Ijoid; Nigeria).
  • Jack Merrill (PhD 2018) archived a new collection on Kobiana (Senegambian; Senegal, Guinea-Bissau), based on fieldwork in Senegal in 2016, including sound recordings of elicitation sessions, field notes, and photographs.
  • Steve Parker (SIL International; Dallas International University) archived over 300 pages of original field notes on Chamikuro (Arawakan; Peru) based on fieldwork with some of the last native speakers of the language in 1985, 1987, and 1993.

December 2, 2019

Next week, Amy Rose Deal will be traveling to Göttingen, Germany, to give an invited talk on the mass/count distinction at Number and Plurality: Cross-linguistic Variation in the Nominal Domain.

November 29, 2019

In and around the linguistics department in the next week:

November 22, 2019

Congrats to alumnus Nik Rolle (PhD 2018) on the birth of his son Jude Thomas Deverell!

Rolle and son

Congrats to Meg Cychosz and Keith Johnson, whose paper (authors Cychosz, M., Edwards, J., Munson, B., & Johnson, K.) entitled Spectral and temporal measures of coarticulation in child speech will appear next month in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America!

Congrats to alumnus Jack Merrill (PhD '18), who will be joining the Princeton University Program in Linguistics this spring as a Lecturer!

Berkeley SLUgS (Society for Linguistics Undergraduate Students) is hosting its Fourth Annual Linguistics Symposium on Saturday, November 23rd. This year’s symposium features a wide variety of undergraduate speakers presenting on topics ranging from poetry in ASL to child language acquisition, as well as a keynote by Larry Hyman. Coffee & breakfast will be provided; see the schedule here and facebook event here.

The 2019 annual meeting of The Society of Biblical Literature is taking place this weekend in San Diego.

On Monday, Nov 25, from 3:10-5pm, please join us in 370 Dwinelle for Qualifying Paper project presentations by third-year graduate students, followed by light refreshments.

  • Schuyler Laparle: Gesture space as interaction space: The spatial separation of topics in discourse
  • Martha Schwarz: Competition and allocutive agreement in Kumal
  • Edwin Ko: Multiple agreement in Crow
  • Tyler Lemon: Metathesis and encliticization in Uab Meto

In and around the linguistics department in the next week:

November 21, 2019

On Thursday, Dec 5, Kenny Baclawski will defend his dissertation, entitled Discourse connectedness: The syntax–discourse structure interface. The defense will take place from 9am-noon in Dwinelle 3401. All members of the department are invited to attend.
Abstract:
 This dissertation argues for the existence of a new -feature, discourse connected (DC), which grammatically encodes a constraint on the relation between the constituent it attaches to and rhetorical relations between multiple sentences in a discourse. Connectives like That's because and For example encode the rhetorical relations explanation and elaboration. DC encodes these relations as well, but by merging a phrase at the left edge of a clause or noun phrase, specifically a phrase that is previously mentioned in the sentence being explained or elaborated upon. I argue that a variety of syntactic phenomena in Eastern Cham, an Austronesian language spoken in Vietnam, are best explained in terms of DC-marking: topicalization, optional wh-movement, inventory forms, partitives, and certain appositives. Given that DC encodes a discourse structural constraint, there must be an interface between syntax and discourse structure, and this interface may help expand the typology of possible -features.

November 16, 2019

Congratulation to Alice Shen, Susanne Gahl, and Keith Johnson, whose paper Didn’t hear that coming: effects of withholding phonetic cues to code-switching has been accepted for publicati

November 15, 2019

The 2019-2020 colloquium series continues this coming Monday, Nov 18, with a talk by Daisy Rosenblum (UBC). Same time as always, same place as always: 3:10-5 p.m., 370 Dwinelle Hall. The talk is entitled Nouns, Noun Phrases, and other Referential Resources in Kʷak̓ʷala, and the abstract is as follows:

This paper explores the status, constituency and distributive patterning of Kʷak̓ʷala Noun Phrases in a corpus of recently recorded spontaneous interaction, and examines them alongside other referential resources available to speakers. Kʷak̓ʷala – along with other Wakashan languages, and neighboring Salishan languages – has challenged some of our ideas about how categories such as ‘Noun’ and ‘Verb’ work in grammar. However, while lexical roots in Kʷak̓ʷala and other Wakashan languages may not easily sort themselves into self-evident ‘Noun’ and ‘Verb’ categories (cf. Bach 1968, Jacobsen 1979, Kinkade 1983; Demirdache & Matthewson 1995; inter alia), syntactic predicates and arguments are clear within conversational data, and Kʷak̓ʷala lexical argument phrases align well with our expectations of ‘NP’ as a category. In considering how lexical reference in Kʷak̓ʷala relates to other referring resources in the language, such as (so-called) ‘lexical suffixes,’ I also ask what we can understand from examining bilingual speakers’ translations of their Kʷak̓ʷala into English, and explore how Kʷak̓ʷala lexical reference compares with patterns of Preferred Argument Structure and other information management constraints found cross-linguistically (cf. Chafe 1984; DuBois 1987). Examining these and other questions for Kʷak̓ʷala allows a nuanced and emergent analysis of what is meant by the category ‘Noun Phrase’ in Kʷak̓ʷala, identifies functions NPs serve in Kʷak̓ʷala grammar in use, and informs our understanding of how to develop useful materials for teachers and learners engaged in Kʷak̓ʷala revitalization.

In and around the linguistics department in the next week or so:

  • Syntax and Semantics Circle - Friday Nov 15 - Dwinelle 1303 - 3-4:30pm
    Emily Clem (UC San Diego): Unifying inverse marking and the strictly descending PCC
  • Phorum - Monday Nov 18 - Dwinelle 3401 - 12-1pm
    Hannah Sande (Georgetown): TBA
  • Linguistics Department Colloquium - Monday Nov 18 - Dwinelle 370 - 3:10-5pm
    Daisy Rosenblum (UBC): Nouns, Noun Phrases, and other Referential Resources in Kʷak̓ʷala
  • CogNetwork - Monday Nov 18 - Dwinelle 1303 - 5p
    Inés Lozano Palacio (University of La Rioja): Deconstructing irony: A cognitive approach to an analytic enigma
  • Fieldwork Forum - Thursday Nov 21 - Dwinelle 1303 - 3:40-5pm
    Emily Drummond (UC Berkeley): TBA
  • Syntax and Semantics Circle - Friday Nov 22 - Dwinelle 1303 - 3-4:30pm
    Erika Petersen O Farrill (Stanford): TBA
  • Fourth Annual Berkeley Undergraduate Linguistics Symposium - Saturday November 23 -  Dwinelle 370 
    See the full program here and the SLUgS Facebook event here!

November 14, 2019

Postdoc Bernat Bardagil writes to share that he is now in Rio de Janeiro, taking part in the Viva Língua Viva language revitalization conference, organized by the Museu do Índio and UNESCO. Here is Bernat with two members of the Manoki community, Edivaldo Nãpuxi and Dario Kanuxi, in Rio:

Bernat Bardagil and colleagues in Rio

November 12, 2019

Congrats to Zach O'Hagan, whose paper entitled The origin of purpose clause markers in Proto-Omagua-Kukama has been published in Journal of Historical Linguistics 9(2):282-312.