Jason Zentz receives LSA Student Abstract Award

September 28, 2014

Congratulations to PhD candidate Jason Zentz, who will receive the 1st place Student Abstract Award at the 2015 Annual Meeting of the Linguistic Society of America. The Student Abstract Awards were instituted in 2010 to recognize the best abstracts submitted by students for the annual meeting. 

Jason’s abstract, titled “The composite derivation of Shona partial wh-movement,” is a product of elicitation sessions conducted in New Haven with Thabani Dhlakama, a Shona-speaking Yale alumna (BS ’13). Read the award-winning abstract at this link. Here is the abstract summary:

This paper addresses partial wh-movement in Shona ([sna], Bantu, Zimbabwe), which is sensitive to islands below but not above the pronunciation site of the wh-word. I argue for a composite derivation of this phenomenon: the wh-word moves overtly to its pronunciation site at an intermediate clause boundary, where it is unselectively bound by a null operator in the scopal position. Thus, Shona partial wh-movement can be reduced to a hybrid of full wh-movement and wh-in-situ. This composite derivation has been predicted to be possible (Sabel 2000, Abels 2012), but clear empirical support for it has been lacking until now.

The award will be presented on January 10th at the 2015 LSA Annual Meeting in Portland, Oregon.

People Tags: 
Research Tags: