Tomorrow we will have a student session of TiL featuring our own Brad Hoot (UIC PhD student) and visiting student Álvaro Recio (University of Salamanca PhD student). Brad Hoot will present, “An Optimality Theoretic Analysis of Focus in Spanish and English.” His presentation will be conducted in English. Álvaro Recio will present, “Las propiedades argumentales de los complementos del nombre en español,” and his presentation will be given in Spanish.
As always the talk will be at 3 PM in 1750 University Hall with light refreshments provided.
Álvaro Recio (University of Salamanca)
Las propiedades argumentales de los complementos del nombre en español
Son muchos los autores que en las últimas décadas han puesto de relieve el paralelismo existente entre la estructura interna del sintagma nominal y del sintagma verbal. No todos los modificadores realizan la misma aportación al significado de un sintagma, ni tienen idénticas propiedades formales ni gozan del mismo estatuto sintáctico.
De la misma manera que el verbo posee una red argumental que le permite seleccionar determinado tipo de complementos, ciertos sustantivos, bien por herencia deverbal, bien por su propia semántica interna, seleccionan igualmente complementos argumentales. En consecuencia, en el interior de los grupos nominales, de forma paralela a las oraciones, también es preciso distinguir entre argumentos y adjuntos. Si bien en otras lenguas, fundamentalmente inglés, italiano y francés, se han dedicado numerosos estudios al respecto, en el ámbito hispánico apenas se han esbozado unas pautas generales de clasificación de estos complementos, por lo que se revela necesario un análisis exhaustivo y profundo aplicado al español.
El objetivo de esta charla es presentar las características generales de un proyecto que trata de ahondar en la estructura interna del sintagma nominal en castellano, en los llamados complementos argumentales del sustantivo. Para ello, se expondrán los rasgos fundamentales que permiten determinar qué clases de sustantivos pueden seleccionar argumentos en español, cuál es la estructura de estos y qué tipo de vínculo los enlaza con el núcleo nominal, pues parece que no todos los argumentos tienen el mismo peso dentro del sintagma: el de mayor relieve temático podría ser considerado el “sujeto” del sintagma nominal.
Especial atención se dedicará a las subordinadas sustantivas que se vinculan a un nombre a través de una preposición (por ejemplo, la idea de comprar un coche o el problema de que los alumnos no estudien), ya que muchos aspectos de su funcionamiento están todavía desatendidos. Una rigurosa descripción de los modificadores del sustantivo no puede ignorar este tipo de construcciones y requiere analizar las características de los núcleos que las aceptan, el carácter argumental o no de la oración, así como la elección del modo correspondiente en el verbo subordinado.
Tomorrow, October 30th, we’re having another UIC Talk in Linguistics. This week we have the privilege of presenting another of UIC’s own linguistics, Xuehua Xiang. The talk, entitled “Linguistic Representation of ‘Self’ and Narrative Co-Construction: A Comparative Discourse Analysis of Celebrity Interviews in American English and Mandarin Chinese” will take place in 1750 University Hall from 3 to 5, with light refreshments provided.
Drawing on 600-minutes of TV/radio interviews featuring celebrity guests, broadcast in Mandarin Chinese in China and American English in the U.S., respectively, this paper is a comparative discourse analysis of the interview as a form of narrative co-construction, as situated within the two cultures.
A preliminary analysis of six Mandarin interviews and six English interviews suggests that English speakers assume a parallel “you” vs.”I” dynamic in co-constructing the interviewee’s personal narrative; English interviewers tend to propel the narrative through mechanisms of A-Event and B-Event (Labov, 1972), i.e., the interviewer shares personal experience and/or reveals personal knowledge about the interviewee, which in effect elicits the interviewee’s autobiographical account. In contrast, the Mandarin interviews manifest a triangular structure whereby the interviewer assumes a mediating role between public consciousness and the
interviewee (cf. Xiang, 2003), i.e., the interviewer highlights the general public’s knowledge gaps, and frames the interviewee’s upcoming narration as being different from, and corrective of, public knowledge. Particularly, both the interviewer and interviewee in the Chinese data highlight the conflict between the interviewee as a social individual (e.g. wo ‘I’, ni ‘you’) and the interviewee as “private” self (e.g. wo/ni ziji “I myself” “you yourself”‘). This duality in the linguistic construction of “self” is not obvious in the English data. Continue reading →
Tomorrow we’re having UIC’s own Susan Goldman at TiL. Her talk, “Inquiry Using Multiple Sources of Information,” will take place at the usual time (3pm to 5pm) in the usual place (1750 University Hall–601 South Morgan Street, Chicago IL 60607). Hope to see you there!
Inquiry Using Multiple Sources of Information
Susan R. Goldman
Departments of Psychology and Curriculum & Instruction (UIC)
Learning Sciences Research Institute
Contemporary society has been dubbed the “knowledge society” largely due to the increased availability and accessibility of information in both professional and personal life contexts. This situation exacerbates the need to understand how people use information from multiple sources to accomplish their goals. Many of those goals involve solving some problem, answering some question, or conducting some type of inquiry. The analysis and synthesis of information from multiple sources is a complex comprehension skill often requires bringing a critical lens to the
sense-making process. The presentation will focus on efforts to unpack the construct “multiple source comprehension” and construct a process model of it as well as empirical investigations of the efforts of young adolescents to use multiple text sources of information to address an inquiry question in the history domain. These efforts involve specifying the content structure of the sources, the relevance of information to the argument structure of the inquiry question.
Once again we will be having UICTiL tomorrow, October 2nd from 3 to 5. Our speaker this week is Chris Kennedy from the University of Chicago. His talk, entitled ‘Aspectual Composition and Scalar Change’, will take place in 1750 University Hall, 601 S. Morgan Street, Chicago IL 60607. Feel free to join us at 3 for the talk, with light refreshments being served as always.
ASPECTUAL COMPOSITION AND SCALAR CHANGE
Current theories of aspect acknowledge the pervasiveness of verbs of variable telicity, and are designed to account both for why these verbs show such variability and for the complex conditions that give rise to telic and atelic interpretations. Previous work has identified several sets of such verbs, including incremental theme verbs, such as eat and destroy; degree achievements, such as cool and widen; and (a)telic directed motion verbs, such as ascend and descend. As the diversity in descriptive labels suggests, most previous work has taken these classes to embody distinct phenomena and to have distinct lexical semantic analyses. Continue reading →
In a special session of UICTiL our very own Professor Nuñez-Cedeño and Junice Acosta will give a talk tomorrow about the Vocalization of Liquids in the Spanish of Cibao in the Dominican Republic. The talk will take place at 3pm in 1750 University Hall (601 S. Morgan Street, Chicago IL 60607).
EN TORNO AL CONTEXTO REAL DE LA VOCALIZACIÓN CIBAEÑA: UN NUEVO REPLANTEAMIENTO PROSÓDICO
Junice Acosta y Rafael Núñez-Cedeño (UIC)
Se ha teorizado que la vocalización de líquidas en el español cibaeño (VLEC) no es tan general. arris (1983:47-50) explica que el dominio de la regla que desencadena ese proceso sólo se aplica líquidas finales de palabras prosódicas (Pp) y no a las de funcionales (Pfunc). De modo que si bien en la oración él avisa, la líquida del pronombre se vocaliza, resultando en [[ej]Pp [aβísa]]Pp, no le ocurre lo mismo a la del determinante el aviso, la cual al estar estructurada como [e.la.βi.so]Pp, surge intacta. Continue reading →
Our first UIC Talk in Linguistics is coming up Friday September 18th! Our first speaker will be Marisol Garrida from Western Illinois University. Her talk is entitled “Diphthongization of Non-High Vowel Squences in Latin American Spanish”. The talk will take place in 1750 of University Hall (601 South Morgan Street) from 3pm to 5pm.
DIPHTHONGIZATION OF NON-HIGH VOWEL SEQUENCES IN LATIN AMERICAN SPANISH
Adjacent vowels in Spanish may be syllabified either as heterosyllabic
(V.V) or tautosyllabic (VV) sequences, depending on the vowel quality
and/or the position of the stress. As a general rule, sequences of
non-high vowels, or a stressed high vowel in contact with a non-high vowel
are to be articulated as two separate syllables (hiatus); the remaining
sequence combinations are to be parsed as tautosyllabic or diphthong
Despite the established syllabification rules, previous studies on Spanish
phonology report on different variation phenomena. The resulting forms of
output include cases as contrastive as the articulation of ‘exceptional
hiatuses’ in Peninsular Spanish (e.g. [kli.én.te] for [kljen.te]
‘customer’) and the tendency to diphthongize hiatus sequences in Latin
American Spanish (e.g. [tja.tro] for [te.á.tro] ‘theater’).
Given the reported variation, this research focuses on the tendency to
diphthongization of canonical hiatus sequences (e.g. /ea/> /ja/ as desear
[de.se.ár]>[de.sjár] ‘to want’) observed in two different varieties of
Latin American Spanish (Mexican and Colombian).
Data collected from 39 college students from Bogota and Mexico City were
analyzed with the aim of establishing the different factors constraining
this sound change. Results presented in this talk compare the
pronunciation of the sequences /ea/ and /ia/ in two grammatical categories
(nouns and verbs) and three different stress contexts (pretonic, tonic and
posttonic). The data analyzed come from recorded speech samples (a total
of 2720 tokens) and the participants’ syllabification intuitions.
The overall results confirm that the tendency to diphthongize hiatus
sequences is highly spread in some Latin American varieties (data for the
oral syllabification task from Bogota showed that 52.2% of the words
containing the expected hiatus sequence ‘e.a’ were syllabified as
diphthongs, for Mexico City, 54.6% of the sequences were syllabified as
diphthongs).Additionally results from the acoustic analysis showed that
the articulation of a VV sequence varies from one stress context to
another. The tendency to reduce the hiatus sequence /ea/ to a
tautosyllabic articulation [ja] is more likely to occur in a stress
context other than tonic/initial, with posttonic position being the most
favorable for diphthongization to occur.
Results from this study contribute to the field of Spanish phonology in
three main aspects: they report on dialectal differences and similarities
from two different varieties, they confirm the relevance of proximity to
stress and relative position of the sequence in the word as a constraining
factor in the articulation of adjacent vowels, and they add to
methodological approaches by comparing results from two different
syllabification tasks, and showing that task choice plays an important
role when testing intuitive judgments.
This Friday, April 10th, Dennis Ott from Harvard will give his talk entitled, “Stylistic fronting as remnant movement”.
Join us in University Hall room 1750 from 2 until 4pm and, as always, light refreshments will be provided.
In this paper, I discuss a peculiar movement type found in Icelandic, known since Maling’s (1980) seminal work as *stylistic fronting* (SF), which shifts a postverbal constituent to the left of the finite verb. SF poses nontrivial problems for syntactic theory, as it appears to contradict a number of widely-held theoretical assumptions (see Holmberg 2006 for a survey); in particular, it appears to move heads (adverbs, participles, particles) into a specifier position (Spec-T), which in addition should be occupied by a trace/copy. SF only applies in clauses with a “subject gap” (basically, embedded clauses with relativized/extracted subjects and impersonal constructions); it is semantically vacuous, optional and (for the most part) in complementary distribution with expletive-insertion. I will show that my account can derive all of these properties while relying on a minimal set of assumptions. Previously, SF in Icelandic has been analyzed as head movement (Jónsson 1991), as a subcase of topicalization (Rögnvaldsson & Thráinsson 1990), or as movement of phonological features (Holmberg 2000). I argue that these approaches are empirically and conceptually problematic and propose instead to analyze SF as EPP-driven phrasal A-movement of a (potentially remnant) XP to Spec-T. This novel approach to Icelandic SF not only allows for a unified treatment of its various manifestations but is also shown to make a number of desirable predictions concerning the observed properties and restrictions. Thus, SF turns out to be yet another phenomenon in Germanic syntax for which a remnant-movement analysis proves superior to alternative accounts.
Shahrzad Mahootian of Northeastern Illinois University will be presenting this Friday at UIC Talks in Linguistics. The talk will take place in 1750 University Hall (601 S. Morgan Street) from 2-3.
The Medium and the Message: Codeswitching in written discourse
“I am always the other but I get to choose my identity depending on context”
(Guillermo Gomez-Pena, 1993)
“Are you an independent *chica *or a cling-on?” (Latina 2001)
A variety of reasons and explanations have been put forth for why bilinguals codeswitch. Nearly all the data considered has come from spoken, unscripted discourse, with very little attention paid to written texts. Using data
from a variety of sources, I examine the motivations behind codeswitching in written texts. I employ Fairclough’s discourse model (1995) in which he proposes a three dimensional approach for critical discourse analysis. The model is based on the interrelationship between *text, discourse practice * and* sociocultural practice*. He claims that “social-identity struggles” are worked out through “new configurations of genres and discourse” (pg 8). An analysis of the “texture” (form, organization and content) of code mixing in written texts leads me to conclude that* *the use of mixed language is one *discourse practice* through which a ‘bicultural identity’ is defined and promoted (*sociocultural practice*). Specifically, the intentional use of mixed code in printed media serves as an identity marker for the bilingual speech community associated with this data (Mahootian 2005). The use of mixed code in the context of a national publication for example, such as *Latina*, is one way that the social-identity struggles of Latinos in the United States are expressed, and to a certain extent, resolved.
This Friday at UICTiL UIC’s own Kara Morgan-Short and Mandy Faretta will be presenting a talk entitled “Awareness and explicitness in second language development”. The talk will take place at 2pm in 1750 University Hall (601 South Morgan Street).
Researchers interested in second language (L2) acquisition have explored the independent but related issues of the role of awareness and the effect of explicit conditions on linguistic development. Previous research suggests that explicit conditions lead to higher levels of awareness (Rosa & Leow, 2004; Rosa & O’Neill, 1999) and that higher levels of awareness lead to greater linguistic development (Leow, 1997; Rosa & Leow, 2004). However, linguistic development has also been evidenced by learners trained under implicit conditions (Morgan-Short et al., 2007) and learners who were unaware (Williams, 2004, 2005).
The current study investigated the role of awareness and explicitness on the acquisition of L2 word order and gender agreement structures. Subjects learned an artificial language to advanced levels of proficiency under two training conditions: explicit and implicit. Assessments included judgment tasks for sentences containing word order and gender agreement violations and matched control sentences. Level of awareness was coded based on students’ written responses to a written judgment task and a debriefing
Results showed that for gender agreement there was a positive relationship between explicit training and a higher level of awareness. A higher level of awareness, however, did not lead to greater accuracy on judgment tasks. For phrase structure, although no relationship was found between training condition and level of awareness, higher levels of awareness were found to lead to greater accuracy. These findings suggest that there are complex interactions between levels of awareness, type of training and linguistic structure that should be more fully explored by future research.
Just a reminder that Jason Merchant from the University of Chicago will be giving a talk this Friday at UIC in 1750 University Hall. Join us at 2pm for his talk entitled, “There’s less to words than meets the eye”. The abstract is posted on the UICTiL website (check the links on the left hand side of this page).