LINGUIST List 10.1415

Wed Sep 29 1999

Qs: Ling as Soc Sci Course,Switch Reference Markers

Editor for this issue: James Yuells <>

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  1. Franz Muller-Gotama, linguistics as a social science course
  2. San Martin Itziar, Switch Reference Markers

Message 1: linguistics as a social science course

Date: Tue, 28 Sep 1999 12:23:46 -0700
From: Franz Muller-Gotama <>
Subject: linguistics as a social science course

Our linguistics program here at California State University, Fullerton
is about to create a freshman-level course which is intended to satisfy
a general education requirement in the social sciences, competing with
courses like Psych 101 and Sociology 101. We would like to hear from
anyone out there who has taught, created, or otherwise thought about
such a course. Some specific questions we have include the following:

1. What should be covered in such a course to make it truly an intro to
social sciences, and not just to linguistics?
2. What textbooks exist which highlight this kind of linguistics at an
introductory level?
3. How can we overcome reservations from the psychologists, etc. that we
are not a true social science (a reservation which we similarly hear
from the humanities people) and so should not be participating in this
general education category?

Feel free to respond to the list or to e-mail me at I will post a summary of responses to the
list then.

Franz Muller-Gotama
Coordinator, Linguistics Program
California State University, Fullerton
Fullerton, CA 92834-6848

phone: (714) 278-7004
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Message 2: Switch Reference Markers

Date: Tue, 28 Sep 1999 19:52:22 -0400 (EDT)
From: San Martin Itziar <>
Subject: Switch Reference Markers

Finer (84) in his book on Switch Reference mentions an interesting fact in
the end (page 198): in some languages , for instance in Diegueno and
Chickasaw, Switch Reference markers converge phonetically with case
markers. Specifically, the 'Same subject' marker is homophonous to a
morpheme that marks subjects, and the 'Different subject' marker coincides
with Oblique case markings. I would have expected the opposite, so I am
looking for more information regarding this issue. ( Also about the case
system of the two languages mentioned above).
Thanks a lot in advance,
Itziar San Martin
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