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Conference Information

Full Title: Linguistic Typology and Cross-Linguistic Psycholinguistics

Location: Zurich, Switzerland
Start Date: 10-Sep-2017 - 13-Sep-2017
Contact: James Myers
Meeting Email: click here to access email
Meeting Description: Workshop Organizers:

James Myers, National Chung Cheng University
Tsung-Ying Chen, National Chung Cheng University

Background & Aim:

The theme of the workshop, as the title suggests, builds on the growing awareness in the international community of the need for typologists and psycholinguists to work together in exploring and explaining language diversity and universals.

Grammarians and psycholinguists are both very interested in cross-linguistic differences and universals, but they have traditionally gone about their data collection and theorizing in quite different ways. In particular, the former usually work by reanalyzing previously collected language descriptions from as wide a variety of languages as possible, in order to test hypotheses about all possible human languages (not just attested languages), whereas the latter mostly test speakers of only two or three languages, which are generally chosen either for accessibility to the research team or for testing specific cross-language variables. Yet both research traditions have much to learn from each other. For typologists, cross-linguistic variation in language processing and the relative difficulty of different linguistic features are theoretically important but difficult to study without adopting psycholinguistic methods like controlled experiments. For psycholinguists, there are serious practical challenges to collecting sufficiently large and varied cross-linguistic samples while maintaining the methodological consistency needed for typological analysis, especially when studying populations without formal test-taking traditions.

This workshop thus hopes to help bring the two worlds closer together, focusing in particular on the following questions:

- How does cross-linguistic variation affect language processing, as revealed in new experiments or new analyses of psycholinguistic corpora (e.g., child language corpora, speech error corpora, or cross-linguistic databases of previously collected experimental results)?
- How can cross-linguistic experiments and psycholinguistic corpora help explain cross-linguistic variation and universals?
- How can a greater number and variety of languages be tested psycholinguistically while maintaining the methodological consistency and rigor needed for typological analysis?
Linguistic Subfield: Psycholinguistics; Typology
LL Issue: 27.5223

This is a session of the following meeting:
50th Meeting of the Societas Linguistica Europaea

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