Archive for February, 2011

Congratulations, Julia!

Thursday, February 17th, 2011

Congrats to Julia Thomas for successfully defending her qualifying paper, “Styeshifting in African American English: Theoretical Implications from a phonetic analysis of /ai/ monophthongization”!

More upcoming conference talks

Wednesday, February 9th, 2011

In addition to several BLS talks mentioned below, Chicago researchers will be presenting at a number of other upcoming conferences.

At the upcoming (Feb 11) 16th Workshop on the Structure and Constituency of Languages of the Americas, Ryan Bochnak, Tim Grinsell, and Alan Yu will be presenting “Copula agreement and the stage-level/individual-level distinction in Washo”.

At the 24th Annual CUNY Conference on Human Sentence Processing (March 24-26), hosted at Stanford, Chicagoans will be presenting one talk:

  • A Corpus Study of Socially Mediated Language Change in Voice Onset Time, by Max Bane, Peter Graff and Morgan Sonderegger

and a number of posters:

  • Interacting with non-native speakers induces “good-enough” representation, by Shiri Lev-Ari, Boaz Keysar and Emily Ho
  • Interference “licensing” of NPIs: Pragmatic reasoning and individual differences, by Ming Xiang, Julian Grove and Anastasia Giannakidou
  • Cross-linguistic variations and similarities: an ERP study of Mandarin wh-constructions, by Ming Xiang, Fengqin Liu, Peiyao Chen and Taomei Guo
  • Implications of individual variation in socio-cognitive processing on sound change, by Alan Yu

Finally, this spring (April 22), the 3rd annual meeting of the Illinois Language and Linguistics Society will be held at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Chicagoans Karlos Arregi and Sue Gal are both invited speakers.

Two Chicagoan Speakers at USC

Wednesday, February 9th, 2011

Professor Chris Kennedy will be giving a colloquium at the University of Southern California on Feb 22, on “The number of meanings of English number words”.

He will be shortly followed by Chicago PhD student Max Bane, who will be giving his own colloquium at USC on Feb 25.

Alan Yu around the World

Wednesday, February 9th, 2011

Professor Alan Yu gave a research seminar recently (Feb 1) at the Department of Linguistics and Modern Languages at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. The talk was titled “Individual variation in socio-cognitive processing and the actuation of sound change”.

He will also be giving a colloquium at Carleton University, Ottawa on March 11 on a similar topic.

Jason Merchant at MIT and Stanford this Spring

Wednesday, February 2nd, 2011

Professor Jason Merchant will be giving an invited colloquium at MIT on March 11, and is also an invited speaker at a workshop on ellipsis at Stanford, this April 29-30. He doesn’t know yet what he’ll talking on at either place, but says it will probably be about gender features under ellipsis.

Chicago at BLS

Wednesday, February 2nd, 2011

Chicago linguistics researchers will be making a good showing at the 37th annual meeting of the Berkeley Linguistics Society, which begins February 12th. Professor Salikoko Mufwene will be presenting an invited paper, Let’s Bury the Pidgin-to-Creole Evolutionary Myth Once and for All!, and three of our graduate students will be presenting papers in the regular sessions:

  • Carissa Anne Abrego-Collier: Liquid dissimilation as listener hypocorrection
  • Thomas Wier: Typological rara (and rarissima) in Khevsur and Tush
  • Julia Thomas: The role of gender in monophthongization of /aI/ in African-American English

Victor Friedman: Keynotes, plenaries, and more

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

Professor Victor A. Friedman recently gave the keynote address for the American Association of Teachers of Slavic and East European Languages at the annual meeting in January. The title was “Families, Leagues, and Hybridity: The Past and Future of Slavic and East European Languages”. The talk will be published in the Spring 2011 issue of the Slavic and East European Journal.

Victor also gave two plenary papers in January:

  • Thailand-Malaysia-Indonesia/Greece-Macedonia-Bulgaria – Parallels and Prospects. Southeast Europe and Southeast Asia: Islam, Merges, and Margins, National University of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur 4-5 January 2011
  • A Thousand Years of Evidentials: From Al-Kashghari to Watergate and Beyond, Conference on Evidentials, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, 14-16 January

Finally, a review of Victor’s edited translation of Bai Ganyo has been published on BULstack, a blog of Bulgarian culture.

Rella I. Cohn research awards

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

The first round of awards have been made from the Chicago Linguistics Graduate Student Research Fund in Honor of Rella I. Cohn. The following projects received individual awards in amounts up to $450:

Ryan Bochnak, ‘Syntax and semantics of Luganda “exceed” comparatives’
Jon Keane, (ASL fingerspelling database for automatic recognition)
Susan Rizzo, ‘Performance errors in the manual modality: the case of ASL fingerspelling’
Christina Weaver, (emphasis in Neo-Aramaic phonology)

Congratulations to Ryan, Jon, Susan, and Christina!

There will be another round of applications for the Rella Cohn fund in Spring 2011; in subsequent years awards will be made once a year in the spring. Look for an announcement next spring about the application deadline.