Phonetics, Phonology, and Morphology


The Berkeley Phonetics and Phonology Forum ("Phorum") is a weekly talk and discussion series featuring presentations on all aspects of phonology and phonetics. 

We meet Friday 3-4pm on Zoom. Please email one of the organizers for the zoom link or to ask to be added to the mailing list (which will include relevant links).

Phorum is organized by Dakota Robinson and Anna Björklund. Our emails are respectively "dakota_robinson" and "aebjorklund"

Beguš publishes on languages of the Caucasus

January 19, 2021

Congrats to Gašper Beguš on the publication of his chapter "Segmental Phonetics and Phonology in Caucasian Languages" in the new Oxford Handbook of Languages of the Caucasus, edited by Maria Polinsky. (A free preprint is available here.)

NSF grant to Wilbanks and Johnson

December 10, 2020

Congrats to Eric Wilbanks, whose NSF Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement grant (with Keith Johnson) is being recommended for funding! The project, titled "On-line Integration during Speech Perception", will involve several experiments tracking the time-course of sociophonetic perception, and includes funding for an improved eye-tracking set-up for the lab.

Sande joins the faculty

October 16, 2020
We are delighted to announce that Hannah Sande will be joining Berkeley Linguistics in January 2021! Hannah will begin teaching classes in Fall 2021, and will spend spring semester advising (remotely), and doing research.

Berkeley @ NELS 51

October 8, 2020

The program for the 51th annual meeting of the North East Linguistic Society (to be hosted virtually by the Université de Quebec à Montreal) has just been released, promising the following presentations by current department members and recent alumni:

  • Amy Rose Deal: 3-on-3 restrictions and PCC typology
  • Peter Jenks: Names as complex indices: On apparent Condition C violations in Thai
  • Laura Kalin and Nicholas Rolle (PhD '18): Deconstructing subcategorization: Conditions on insertion vs. position
  • Edwin Ko: Feeding agreement: Anti-locality in Crow applicatives of unaccusatives

Congrats all!

Nichols colloquium

October 8, 2020

The 2020-2021 colloquium series kicks off this coming Monday, October 12, with a talk by Johanna Nichols (UC Berkeley), held via Zoom. The talk is entitled Proper measurement of linguistic complexity (and why it matters), and the abstract is as follows:

Hypotheses involving linguistic complexity generate interesting research in a variety of subfields – typology, historical linguistics, sociolinguistics, language acquisition, cognition, neurolinguistics, language processing, and others. Good measures of complexity in various linguistic domains are essential, then, but we have very few and those are mostly single-feature (chiefly size of phoneme inventory and morphemes per word in text).
In other ways as well what we have is not up to the task. The kind of complexity that is favored by certain sociolinguistic factors is not what is usually surveyed in studies invoking the sociolinguistic work. Phonological and morphological complexity are very strongly inversely correlated and form opposite worldwide frequency clines, yet surveys of just one or the other, or both lumped together, are used to support cross-linguistic generalizations about the distribution of complexity writ large. Complexity of derivation, syntax, and lexicon is largely unexplored. Measuring the complexity of polysynthetic languages in the right terms has not been seriously addressed.
This paper proposes a tripartite metric---enumerative, transparency-based, and relational---using a set of different assays across different parts of the grammar and lexicon, that addresses these problems and should help increase the grammatical sophistication of complexity-based hypotheses and choice of targets for computational extraction of complexity levels from corpora. Meeting current expectations of sustainability and replicability, the set is reusable, revealing, reasonably granular, and (at least mostly) amenable to computational implementation. I demonstrate its usefulness to typology and historical linguistics with some cross-linguistic and within-family surveys.

Hyman chapter on prosodic domains in Lusoga

September 9, 2020

Congratulations (again!) to Larry Hyman, whose chapter "In search of prosodic domains in Lusoga" has appeared in the (open access) book Syntactic architecture and its consequences, vol. 1: Syntax inside the grammar (2020), edited by András Bárány, Theresa Biberauer, Jamie Douglas, and Sten Vikner.

Hyman in Festschrift for Akinbiyi Akinlabi

September 7, 2020

Congratulations to Larry Hyman, whose chapter "Possessive tone in Tswefap (Bamileke): Paradigmatic or derivational?" has appeared in African Languages in Time and Space: A Festschrift in Honour of Professor Akinbiyi Akinlabi (2020), edited by Eno-Abasi Urua, Francis Egbokhare, Oluseye Adesola, and Harrison Adeniyi.