2015 Apr 22

Patrick Jones (Harvard)

5:15pm to 6:45pm


Boylston 303

Tone Shift is Phonological, and Phonology is not Emergent: Linguistic knowledge and the acquisition of tone in Kinande

Abstract: Recent work by Archangeli and Pulleyblank (2014) has argued that phonological systems are “emergent” in the sense that they can be acquired without the benefit of a rich innate human language faculty. In support of this view, A&P argue that a complex system of tonal alternations in Kinande (Bantu), standardly analyzed as resulting from a phonological rule (namely leftward H tone shift) made available to the learner via some form of...

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2015 Mar 04

Indo–European: Sam Zukoff (MIT)

5:00pm to 6:30pm


Boylston 303

Repetition Avoidance and the Exceptional Reduplication Patterns of Indo-European

2015 Feb 06

Indo-European: Christina Skelton (Harvard University)

4:00pm to 5:30pm


Boylston 104

Pamphylian: Language and Dialect Contact in Ancient Greek


Among the Greek dialects, Pamphylian is odd-- it seems to represent a mix of several different Greek dialect groups, with influence from the neighboring Anatolian languages.  In this talk, I argue that we can reconstruct the early settlement history of Pamphylia using sociolinguistics to study these patterns of language and dialect contact. Specifically, I argue that Pamphylia was initially settled by a small number of Greek speakers who were outnumbered by native Anatolian speakers who learned Greek...

Read more about Indo-European: Christina Skelton (Harvard University)
2015 Apr 27

Whatmough X Lecture

4:00pm to 6:00pm


Sever Hall 113

X Annual Joshua and Verona Whatmough Guest Lecturer: Jonathan D. Bobaljik,  Professor of Linguistics, University of Connecticut

Title:  Morphological Universals: Comparatives and Beyond

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2015 Jan 30

Florian Schwarz (UPenn)

4:30pm to 6:00pm


Boylston 103

Experimental Comparisons of Presuppositions and Implicatures

A core tenet in the theoretical study of linguistic meaning is that the overall meaning conveyed by an utterance is a conglomerate of different types of inferences, such as entailments, presuppositions, and implicatures. These are commonly assumed to differ, among other things, in their source (e.g., conventional vs. general reasoning) and status (e.g., defeasible or not). While the distinctions in this realm have...

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