Graduate student Sigríður Sæunn Sigurðardóttir and her collaborator Thórhallur Eythórsson have contributed a chapter in the recent book The Determinants of Diachronic Stability, on stability and change in the history of Icelandic weather verbs. The paper was originally presented at the pre-conference workshop of DiGS 18 (19th Diachronic Generative Syntax conference) in Ghent, 2016. The abstract for this chapter is given below:
PhD candidate Martín Fuchs and Professor María Piñango recently published a paper in the proceedings of the last Annual Meeting of the Linguistic Society of America. Their paper provides an account of the synchronic variation between the use of the Simple Present marker and the Present Progressive marker in the expression of the habitual reading in Modern Spanish.
Claire Bowern adds an article on the origins of Pama-Nyungan to The Conversation.
A lesson by Claire Bowern on the basics of historical linguistics and the origins of the English language has been turned into a TedEd animation. Watch and listen to the animation to see English has evolved through generations of speakers. (Director: Patrick Smith; Narrator: Addison Anderson.)
Historical Linguist Claire Bowern was one of the contributing experts on WNYC’s postcast RadioLab, in their “Asking for a Friend” segment. She, along with Wilbur Cross Medalist and Yale Alum Sally Thomason, answered questions about how far back in time one can go to find a word that is unchanged, that would be understandable to people far in the past.
Graduate student Samuel Andersson has published a paper in Glossa titled “(*)ABA in Germanic verbs”.
Many members of the Yale linguistics department made a mass exodus to the the recent LSA annual meeting in New York City, where they gave 19 oral and poster presentations at the main meeting, workshops, and sister society meetings. These included:
Ph.D. candidate Rikker Dockum delivered an invited talk at his undergraduate alma mater, Dartmouth College. His talk, titled “The Tonal Comparative Method: Leveraging Lexical Tone in Historical Linguistics”, deals with his work extending the traditional Comparative Method to deal with evidence from sound change in tone systems.
Graduate Student Sarah Babinski and Professor Claire Bowern recently published a paper on mergers and contextual probability in sound change in the journal Linguistics Vanguard. The journal special issue – on predictability in shaping sound patterns in human language – was co-edited by linguistics department faculty member Jason Shaw and Shigeto Kawahara.
Martín introduced his dissertation work to an audience in Mexico, where he is currently conducting research on the imperfective domain in Spanish.
We are excited to work with Caitlyn Antal, Marisha Evans, Randi Martinez, and Jared Sharp as they pursue their graduate studies!
PhD candidate Rikker Dockum presented at the 28th meeting of the Southeast Asian Linguistics Society (SEALS), where he discussed his fieldwork on Khamti, a language spoken in Myanmar and India. Rikker has spent a substantial amount of time in the region documenting various languages, as he conducts his dissertation research on tone systems in Tai-Kadai, a family of languages that includes Khamti and Thai.
As a Presidential Visiting Fellow, Stephanie has spent the past year at Yale teaching the Mohegan language and raising interest in language revitalization.
Based on field research and a translation of the Bible, Joshua’s paper investigates the difference between the first-person pronouns ai and mi.
Chris Geissler and Kevin Zhang joined nine collaborators from Yale and other institutions to study a gene that may influence the way we perceive consonants.
María Piñango, Martín Fuchs, and Sara Sánchez-Alonso discussed their results on variation and change in Spanish with Ashwini Deo of the Ohio State University.
Sixteen presentations and posters from current and former Yale faculty and students were showcased at the annual meeting of the LSA.
Rikker talked about how tonal systems change over time, using statistical analysis on a large dataset he compiled to identify a strong phylogenetic signal.
Scholars from a wide range of institutions and disciplines came to Yale to discuss the cognitive foundations of variation and change in meaning.
Claire spoke about how she applies methods from computational phylogenetics to study the history of the Pama-Nyungan languages.
Yale-affiliated linguists showcased seven different presentations—more than any other university.
We are delighted to welcome Samuel Andersson, Sigríður Sigurðardóttir, and Randi Martinez to our department!
The Department of Linguistics recently held a symposium celebrating the retirement of Professor Emeritus Steve Anderson.