October 23, 2013

Phonetics/Phonology Group meeting (Oct 25)

The Phonetics/Phonology Group is meeting Friday at 12pm in SS560A, as usual. On the agenda:

1) A dry run by Elan, for his talk at the Tromsø Feature Workshop

Invited talk by Alexei at York this Thursday

Alexei Kochetov is giving a talk at York University (Keele campus) this Thursday, Oct 24, 5:15-6:15.

The talk will take place in Ross S 562 and will be followed by a reception in the Department of Languages, Literatures and Linguistics.

 Title: Tracking and Imaging the Tongue: New insights into language-particular phonetic variability

"Early articulatory phonetic research using static palatography and x-ray imaging was crucial to the development of phonetic and phonological theories, and provided important foundations for phonetic typology. For many decades, however, articulatory research has been limited to a small number of research labs, as it required costly equipment, extensive training, and labour-intensive data analysis. While this is still true to some extent, new methods of articulatory data collection and analysis are becoming increasingly available and gradually more affordable. This, together with the increased collaboration among researchers/labs and the discipline-wide growing interest in experimentation, is likely to provide a new impetus to the applied and theoretic phonetics/phonology research. In this talk I will present results from two studies that are part of a larger collaborative effort to develop a cross-language corpus of articulatory data with the goal to explore the data’s implications for applied and theoretical research. The first study employs electropalatography to examine the degree of linguopalatal contact for Japanese voiced, voiceless singleton, and voiceless geminate stops. These contrasts are traditionally analyzed as involving voicing and length features. The results of the study show that the three classes of consonants differ in the relative tightness of the constriction (e.g. /t:/ > /t/ > /d/). This suggests that the primary distinction may involve the feature ‘tense’, thus making the Japanese stop contrasts parallel to those of Korean. The second study (in collaboration with the All-India Institute of Speech and Hearing) uses ultrasound to image the tongue during the production of retroflex and dental consonants in Kannada (Dravidian). Retroflexes in Dravidian languages have been observed to involve substantial curling of the tongue tip towards the palate. Much less is known about the overall shape of the tongue and its dynamics during the retroflex production. The results of the study provide some insight into the process, potentially explaining facts of the retroflex patterning in phonology and acquisition."

New Ways of Analyzing Variation (NWAV) 42 in Pittsburgh

NWAV 42 took place last weekend in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. U of T was extremely well-represented this time around. The talks and posters by current members of the department were (alphabetically by first author):

 • André Arsenault: "Sociolinguistic variation in Mari Old Babylonian."

• Marisa Brook: "Comparative complementizers in Canadian English: Insights from early fiction."

• Aaron Dinkin: "Linguistic and non-linguistic regions in perceptual dialectology."

• Chris Harvey: "Any and no negation in Southern Ontario English."

• Matt Hunt Gardner, Derek Denis, Marisa Brook, and Sali Tagliamonte: "The new global flow of linguistic influence: be like at the saturation point."

• Naomi Nagy and Derek Denis: "An amplification role for lexical frequency in syntactic variation? Testing with heritage Italian."

Sali co-presented a paper with alumna Alexandra D'Arcy (University of Victoria) and colleague Celeste Rodriguez Louro (University of Western Australia) on the spread of be like throughout the English-speaking world.

Alex also presented a solo paper: "Does one change have ramifications for the other?",  introducing her corpus of Victoria English.

Alumna Nicole Rosen (University of Lethbridge) was a part of two talks: "Rhythmic variation in southern Alberta Englishes," with three colleagues, and "Religion as a factor in Southern Alberta English variation."

Former student Greg Madan presented "Enregisterment and disaccomodation: The rise of rhotic speech in rural New Hampshire."

Naomi Nagy also co-led a software workshop: "Extending ELAN into variationist sociolinguistics."

Other sociolinguists from U of T in attendance were Jim Smith (PhD), Ruth Maddeaux (MA), Emilie LeBlanc (MA), Martin Sneath (undergraduate), and French professor Anne-José Villeneuve. Alumni who put in appearances were Bridget Jankowski (recent PhD), Maddie Shellgren (MA, now at Michigan State University), and Shannon Mooney (MA, now at Georgetown University). Thanks to everyone for contributing to a fantastic conference!

October 17, 2013

Syntax-Semantics Project Meeting, Friday, Oct 18

There will be a syntax project this Friday, October 18th, from 12-2, in room SS 560A. Rebecca Tollan will be giving a dry run entitled, "Case marking and sensitivity of little v: evidence from dialectal variation in Basque (and beyond)," and Elizabeth Cowper will be presenting "Reductio ad discrimen: Where features come from" (co-authored with Daniel Currie Hall).

(Post courtesy of Julie Doner)

Psycholinguistics Group Meeting Friday, Oct 18

This is a reminder that the Psycholinguistics Group is meeting on Friday, Oct 18, from 10-12. Danielle Moed (MA student, LIN) will present research she did as an undergrad at McMaster, entitled "A psycholinguistic analysis of NP-movement in English".

The  next meeting is Nov 1. Morgan Sonderegger ( http://people.linguistics.mcgill.ca/~morgan/) will be vising that day from McGill, and will give a presentation to the group. Details to follow.

(Post courtesy of Daphna Heller)

October 10, 2013

Phonetics/Phonology Group meeting Friday, Oct. 11

The phonetics/phonology group will be meeting on Friday, Oct. 11 at 12pm. There are two scheduled talks:

Clarissa Forbes will be presenting her paper "Gitksan stress and the development of lexical accent." This is the paper that won Clarissa the 2013 Elan Dresher Student Phonology Prize!

Avery Ozburn will be doing a dry run of her NELS poster, "Non-local laryngeal alternations in Lezgian: an Agreement by Correspondence analysis".

October 9, 2013

LVC Group Meeting, Friday Oct 11

The LVC Group meets this Friday starting at 10 AM. Presenters will be giving dry-runs for NWAV.  Matt, Derek, Sali, and Marisa will present on their study of quotatives. Derek and Naomi will present on heritage Italian. Marisa will also be presenting aspects of her MA research.

S4 Meeting on Friday, Oct 11

The newly formed 'syntax semantics squib section' (S4) will meet Friday 12-1 in SS2127. There will be two short tutorials – Plurality (by Youri Zabbal) and Types of Copular Constructions (by Susana Bejar) – plus discussion.

The S4 meeting is a newly formed 1-hour slot for informal discussion of sytax-semantics. It will meet every two weeks, alternating with the Syntax-Semantics group.

'Canadian English, Eh?' at Gerstein

The Canadian Language Museum's exhibit 'Canadian English, Eh?' is currently on display at U of T's Gerstein Library (Gerstein Science Information Centre) at 9 King's College Circle. It will be up until October 18. It's very prominently displayed on the main floor, so it is attracting many readers!

The Museum's other exhibit 'Speaking the Inuit Way' was displayed at the Foundation for Endangered Languages conference at Carleton last week, and will be at the Université de Moncton for the Atlantic Provinces Linguistic Association meeting at the beginning of November. Work is underway on the next exhibit about Canadian French, which will open in March 2014.

(Post courtesy of Elaine Gold)