Author Archive

New tools, old questions

Friday, May 27th, 2011

Susie Allen recently wrote a piece for the University of Chicago Humanities Division’s magazine Tableau, which profiles the Linguistics department: New tools, old questions.

Welcome, Diane Brentari!

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011

We are happy to announce that Professor Diane Brentari, currently at Purdue University, has accepted an offer to become a full professor in the Department of Linguistics at the University of Chicago starting next fall. Everyone in the department is very excited — adding her to the faculty will not only bolster our already impressive strength in phonological and morphological theory, but also help to make Chicago a leader in sign language linguistics.

Welcome, Diane!

CLS 47: April 7-9!

Saturday, March 26th, 2011

The 47th Annual Meeting of the Chicago Linguistic Society is coming up, April 7-9 in Ida Noyes Hall. The conference program has been posted, and pre-registration for CLS 47 is now open on the CLS website until March 31. Prices are $20 for pre-registered students and $40 for pre-registered faculty and other attendees. Mailing pre-registration fees in advance (checks only, please) is not required but strongly encouraged to help registration run smoothly at the conference. After March 31, prices will go up to $25 and $50. Registration is FREE for all University of Chicago students.

Carissa Abrego-Collier, Arum Kang, Martina Martinovic, Chieu Nguyen
CLS 47 Organizing Committee

Thomas Grano: Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellow

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011

5th year PhD student Thomas Grano has been awarded a Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowship for the next academic year. This is a national competition among students from all areas of the humanities. Congratulations, Tommy!

Rebekah Baglini: Bloch Fellow

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011

3rd-year PhD student Rebekah Baglini has been named the 2011-13 Bloch Fellow. This award goes to the person who is, in the eyes of the LSA Summer Institute fellowship selection committee, “the most promising applicant for fellowships” at the Institute. The Bloch Fellow receives an institute fellowship (obviously), and then serves as a voting member of the LSA Executive Committee for two years. Wow!

Jason Riggle at UCSD

Sunday, March 6th, 2011

Jason Riggle just spoke at the linguistics colloquium of the University of Southern California, San Diego, on Generative models of variation within and between languages, the abstract of which follows:

In this talk, I evaluate three proposed mechanisms for generative
models of variation within language: (i) sampling from partially
specified grammars, (ii) grammars with noisy parameters, and (iii) probabilistic grammars. After describing qualitative differences among the types of variation they allow, I assess the ability of these three models to fit observed patterns of variation and ask whether there is (or could be) an empirical basis for selecting one of them. Finally, I ask the same questions in terms of the models’ ability to account for typological variation (i.e., the frequency with which various patterns are attested typologically).

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.