Calques 4.16 (January 20, 2017)
Newsletter, Department of Linguistics, UC Berkeley
Please send information and news of departmental interest to Andrew Garrett.
Two new department visitors introduce themselves here.
- Bernat Bardagil-Mas: "I'm a PhD candidate at the University of Groningen, in the Netherlands, and since last week I'm also a visiting student researcher at the linguistics department at UC Berkeley. My research focuses on Panará, a language of the Jê family spoken by an aboriginal group of 500 individuals who live in the center of Brazil, at the headwaters of the Iriri river. Besides writing a dissertation on agreement and case in Panará, I'm working on a documentation of the language and I'm kick-starting a project to set up a dictionary and an annotated corpus from my field data. During the spring semester I'll mostly work with Lev Michael and Andrew Garrett, but I plan to talk to as many Berkeley people as I can. I will also happily be an informant of Catalan for anyone with Romance curiosities. You can find me in 1314."
- Inge Genee: "I am Associate Professor of Linguistics in the Department of Modern Languages at the University of Lethbridge, a small university in Southern Alberta, Canada, in the middle of traditional Blackfoot territory. As the only fulltime linguist there, I’m spread pretty thin. At Berkeley I look forward to being able to interact with fellow linguists with similar interests in indigenous languages, language documentation and revitalization, typology, and functional approaches to language. I’m here officially as a Sproul Fellow in the Canadian Studies program, but will be based in Linguistics. I’ll be working on several projects while I’m here. One is a theoretical paper on polysynthesis for a volume on Functional Discourse Grammar. Another is an article and set of presentations about how we apply ideas from the Participatory Action Research framework in our Blackfoot Language Resources and Digital Dictionary project. In the place where the Master-Apprentice program was first pioneered I hope to get new ideas to help me find better ways to involve Blackfoot and non-Blackfoot students and community members in our language work in a meaningful way, in the spirit of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s recommendations. I’ll be at Berkeley from January to early May and can often be found in Rich Rhodes’s office. Please knock on the door!"
Welcome Bernat and Inge!
The first Inkling of 2017 will take place on Monday, January 23, from 3:30 to 5 pm in 1229 Dwinelle. All are welcome to our monthly social hour (and a half) with tea, coffee, and potluck treats — you'll find talk about work, life, ideas, and the pursuit of happiness.
- Potluck: If your last name begins with the letters O-Z (e.g. Saussure), you are encouraged to bring something tasty. The department will provide beverages (coffee, tea, juice).
A digest of previously unreported 2016 publications from our Language and Cognition Lab:
- Yang Xu, Terry Regier, and Barbara C. Malt (2016). Historical semantic chaining and efficient communication: The case of container names. Cognitive Science, 40, 2081-2094.
- Joshua T. Abbott, Thomas L. Griffiths, and Terry Regier (2016). Focal colors across languages are representative members of color categories. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 113, 11178-11183.
- Emily Cibelli, Yang Xu, Joseph L. Austerweil, Thomas L. Griffiths, and Terry Regier (2016). The Sapir-Whorf hypothesis and probabilistic inference: Evidence from the domain of color. PLOS ONE 11(7): e0158725.
- Christine Tseng, Alexandra Carstensen, Terry Regier, and Yang Xu (2016). A computational investigation of the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis: The case of spatial relations. In Proceedings of the 38th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society.
- Terry Regier, Alexandra Carstensen, and Charles Kemp (2016). Languages support efficient communication about the environment: Words for snow revisited. PLOS ONE 11(4): e0151138.
- Kevin J. Holmes and Terry Regier (2016). Categorical perception beyond the basic level: The case of warm and cool colors. Cognitive Science.
Also, California Magazine has published a nice overview of the Linguistics collaboration (with the Hearst Museum, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and University Library, funded by NEH and NSF) to create new higher-quality sound files from nearly 3,000 early twentieth-century wax cylinder recordings that document California and other indigenous languages and music.
- Monday, January 23
- Wednesday, January 25
- Thursday, January 26
- 12:30–2: Discussion of Gray & Jordan 2000, "Language trees support the express-train sequence of Austronesian expansion" (*dhworom, 1229 Dwinelle)
- Friday, January 27