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LINGUIST List 17.2703

Thu Sep 21 2006

Calls: Sociolinguistics/Poland; Semantics, Syntax/France

Editor for this issue: Dan Parker <danlinguistlist.org>

As a matter of policy, LINGUIST discourages the use of abbreviations or acronyms in conference announcements unless they are explained in the text. To post to LINGUIST, use our convenient web form at http://linguistlist.org/LL/posttolinguist.html.
        1.    Yves Peirsman, Cognitive Sociolinguistics
        2.    Bridget Copley, Forces in Grammatical Structures

Message 1: Cognitive Sociolinguistics
Date: 21-Sep-2006
From: Yves Peirsman <yves.peirsmanarts.kuleuven.be>
Subject: Cognitive Sociolinguistics

Full Title: Cognitive Sociolinguistics

Date: 15-Jul-2007 - 20-Jul-2007
Location: Krakow, Poland
Contact Person: Yves Peirsman
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >
Web Site: http://wwwling.arts.kuleuven.be/qlvl/cs.htm

Linguistic Field(s): Sociolinguistics

Call Deadline: 31-Oct-2006

Meeting Description:

Theme Session on Cognitive Sociolinguistics at the 10th International Cognitive Linguistics Conference.

First Call for Papers for a Theme Session at the 10th International Cognitive Linguistics Conference

Theme: Cognitive Sociolinguistics

Dirk Geeraerts, University of Leuven, dirk.geeraerts [at] arts.kuleuven.be
Gitte Kristiansen, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, gkristia [at] filol.ucm.es
Yves Peirsman, University of Leuven, yves.peirsman [at] arts.kuleuven.be

10th International Cognitive Linguistics Conference
Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland
15-20 July 2007


Although there is a growing interest within Cognitive Linguistics for language-internal variation (see Kristiansen and Dirven, forthcoming: Cognitive Sociolinguistics, Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter), it remains an understudied area in Cognitive Linguistics. Too often linguistic analyses (or cross-linguistic comparisons) are carried out at the level of 'a language', disregarding rich and complex patterns of intralingual variation. Such a level of granularity ultimately amounts to that of a homogeneous and thus idealized speech community. Cognitive Linguistics, to the extent that it takes the claim that it is a usage-based approach to language and cognition seriously, cannot afford to work with language situated taxonomically at an almost Chomskyan level of abstraction. The purpose of the theme session is therefore to bring together examples of outstanding sociolinguistic research within the field of Cognitive Linguistics.

The Scope of Cognitive Sociolinguistics:

The domain of investigation of Cognitive Sociolinguistics may be roughly divided into three main areas, each of which represents a specific relationship between cognition and language-internal linguistic diversity (which we will henceforth refer to as ''lectal variation''). We invite abstracts for presentations in all three areas:

1. Lectal Variation and Knowledge of the Language:

How does language-internal variation affect the occurrence of linguistic phenomena, and in particular, how does it affect the occurrence of linguistic phenomena that have the specific attention of Cognitive Linguistics? The question involves not only active knowledge of the language (i.e. language use), but also passive knowledge (i.e. reading and understanding skills).

Existing examples of Cognitive Linguistic work in this area may be found in Berthele's work on verbal framing in the Swiss dialects, the work by Gries and Stefanowitsch on register variation in collostructions, and Croft's views on the importance of social variation for a theory of linguistic change.

Topics of specific interest within this domain of research include:

- lectal factors in language acquisition: how does the change in an individual's knowledge of the language interact with social factors?
- language variation and change: how do changes spread over a linguistic community, what is the role of distributed linguistic cognition in these processes, and how does the feedback loop between individual acts and common systemic changes actually work?
- multivariate models of language variation: what analytical and descriptive tools do we need to arrive at an adequate description of linguistic variation?

2. Lectal Variation, Language and Thought:

A lot of front-edge research is looking into the relationship between language and thought (Slobin, Bowerman etc.), but this is basically done from an interlingual (typological) point of view. What happens if you conduct similar research from an intralingual point of view? Does lectal variation have the same effect on the relationship between language and thought as typological variation?

Although this is only an emerging trend, a clear example of Cognitive Linguistic work in this area is Grondelaers' work on the psycholinguistic correlates of the multifactorial distribution of Dutch ''er''.

Topics of specific interest within this domain of research involve:

- the relationship between language and culture: do language-internal differences in the relationship between language and thought reflect differences of ''culture'' ?
- the relationship between cultural models and thought: to what extent does variation in cultural models within a community correlate with cognitive differences?

3. The Cognitive Representation of Lectal Variation:

How do language users perceive lectal differences, and how do they evaluate them attitudinally? What models do they use to categorize linguistic diversity?

Examples of this kind of work within the framework of Cognitive Linguistics are Kristiansen's work on the socially informed prototype structure of phonemes, or Geeraerts' work on cultural models of standardization.

Topics of specific interest within this domain of research include:

- stereotyping: how do language users categorize other groups of speakers?
- subjective and objective linguistic distances: is there a correlation between objective linguistic distances, perceived distances, and language attitudes?
- cultural models of language diversity: what models of lectal variation, standardization, and language change do people work with?
- attitudes, perception, and change: to what extent do attitudinal and perceptual factors have an influence on language change?

Structure of the Session:

Our theme session will consist of:
(1) presentations of the selected papers,
(2) presentations by a number of invited specialists,
(3) three 20-minute thematic discussion slots.


We invite abstracts of max. 500 words for 20-minute presentations in the three areas described above. Your abstract should contain:

- The title of the presentation;
- Your name(s), affiliation(s) and e-mail address(es);
- The research question(s) that you address;
- A discussion of the methodology;
- A description of the data;
- A summary of the obtained results.

Abstracts should be sent to all three theme session organisers before October 31, 2006.


Deadline call for abstracts: October 31, 2006
Notification of acceptance/rejection of abstracts: November 15, 2006
Submission of the theme session proposal to the conference organisers: November 15, 2006
Notification of acceptance/rejection of theme session: February 1, 2007

For up-to-date information about the theme session, see wwwling.arts.kuleuven.be/qlvl.

Message 2: Forces in Grammatical Structures
Date: 21-Sep-2006
From: Bridget Copley <figs2007free.frr>
Subject: Forces in Grammatical Structures

Full Title: Forces in Grammatical Structures
Short Title: FiGS

Date: 18-Jan-2007 - 20-Jan-2007
Location: Paris, France
Contact Person: Bridget Copley
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >
Web Site: http://figs2007.free.fr

Linguistic Field(s): Cognitive Science; Semantics; Syntax

Call Deadline: 20-Oct-2007

Meeting Description:

FiGS is an interdisciplinary conference on how causality, physical and mental forces, agentivity, and related ideas are represented in the grammar.

Deadline extended: October 20

FiGS is an interdisciplinary conference on how causality, physical and mental forces, agentivity, and related ideas are represented in the grammar. We especially seek abstracts related to viewpoint aspect, modality, and discourse. Other domains discussed below in the original call for papers below are also welcome.

Ever since the Davidsonian revolution in semantics, it has been recognized that an adequate theory of meaning must somehow make reference to events. More recently, there has been growing interest in the proposal that theories of meaning should also refer to causal relations between events, or to actions or properties that cause events, i.e., forces. (We like this term better than ''causes'' because it does not presuppose that the effect is actually brought about.) Forces seem to be useful in several different, but related, areas of linguistic interest.

The first area is argument structure of the verb and voice, of causatives, applicatives, and unaccusatives. The 'Agent' vs. 'Causer' distinction, clear in 'stimulus' readings of psych-causatives (John/The TV surprised Mary), and in Agent-possessor event nominalizations (The teacher's/Pique's separation of Mary and Sue), has been loosely connected to animacy, but intentionality, understood as the ability to control the course of the event, may be more relevant. The availability of unaccusative structures for intransitive verbs has been correlated with the notion of 'internal causation', in which the internal constitution of a entity is such that the verbal action is produced inexorably; it would be interesting to consider this insight in the light of theories of inertia worlds. And notions of causation seem equally relevant to understanding serial verb constructions.

The second is that of aspect. Atelic/imperfective forms or readings of telic verb phrases express an interruption in the natural course of events that is computed from the lexical meanings of the predicates involved. Perfectivity has been observed to interact with animacy, again perhaps implicating inertia and control -- imperfectives of permission verbs, for example, are possible with animate permitters but not inanimate ones in Greek and Italian. Verb forms that express out-of control actions, failed actions, or successful actions have been studied in Austronesian and Salish languages; a view of aspect that took note of forces might provide an understanding of how these forms interact with aspect.

The third area is that of modality. For example, inertia worlds can be thought of as worlds in which no external forces intervene with a certain causal chain of events. A force itself could thus be thought of as an impetus towards an ideal set of worlds, and so any modality that could be spoken of in terms of an ordering source could also be spoken of in terms of forces. Evidentials, as well as modalities of natural law, disposition, and ability, all traditionally more resistant to possible world analyses, might fare better by considering how to represent forces.

The fourth topic of interest is that of causal relations in the domain of complex sentences and the study of the types of constructions and morphosyntactic means of expressing such relations (clause-ordering, conjunctive particles, prepositions, pragmatic markers, etc.). Relations between an antecedent and a consequent event may be expressed in a variety of ways, as sequential events based on the logical order of implication (cause-consequence) or in non-sequential order (consequence-cause) based on inferential or epistemic relations. These constructions often have different discourse and argumentative functions and evidence different types of syntactic hierarchy. These four topics have much in common, but because they fall into different parts of the phrasal structure, it is rare that they are all discussed together. We would like to remedy that situation by gathering together researchers interested in how forces and causal relations are represented in grammatical structures. Recognizing that linguists are not the only ones interested in these questions, we warmly welcome submissions from psychology, philosophy, and computer science, and will actively structure the workshop to maximize interdisciplinary exchange.

The meeting is intended to be something of a hybrid between a workshop and a conference, with a relatively large number of invited speakers, and no more than ten or twelve non-invited talks, along with a robust poster session. We solicit papers for the non-invited talks and posters on these and related topics:

How is causation represented in cognitive systems, semantics, and/or syntax?
How are physical forces represented in cognitive systems, semantics, and/or syntax? Are ''mental forces,'' e.g., intentions, obligations, man-made laws, information, represented similarly?

What is an agent? What is an inanimate causer? What properties do the forces they exert have, and how are these relevant to the grammar?
What is the relationship between the acquisition of language and the acquisition of naïve theories of physics and mind?

Abstracts are invited for 20-minute talks (plus 10 minutes of discussion), and a poster session. Submissions are limited to one individual and one joint abstract per author. Abstracts may be submitted in either French or English.

Abstracts should in pdf form, and should be anonymous and limited to two pages (using 1'' margins on all sides and 11pt font size). Any non-standard fonts should be embedded in the pdf document.

We strongly prefer submissions by email, sent to figs2007.free.fr. Please attach the abstract with subject line ''Abstract'' and include the following information in the email:

Name(s) of author(s);
Affiliation(s) of author(s);
Email(s) of author(s);
Title of abstract;
Whether the abstract should also be considered for the poster session.

Submission deadline: October 20, 2006

Notification of acceptance: November 10, 2006

Version française

Depuis la ''révolution davidsonienne'' en sémantique, on admet qu'une théorie adéquate du sens doit faire référence aux événements. Plus récemment, il a été suggéré qu'une théorie du sens doit aussi faire référence aux relations causales entre les événements, ou aux actions ou propriétés qui causent les événements : à savoir les « forces ». (Nous préférons l'emploi du mot « force » au mot « cause » parce que ce premier ne présuppose pas qu'elle soit suivie d'effet.) La notion de force semble utile dans plusieurs domaines linguistiques distincts mais liés.

Le premier domaine est la structure argumentale du verbe et de la voix, des causatifs, des applicatifs et des inaccusatifs. Nette dans les lectures 'à stimulus' de causatifs psychologiques (Jean/l'orage a surpris Marie) et dans les nominalisations d'événements à possesseur agent (The teacher's/Pique's separation of Mary and Sue), la distinction agent/causateur a été généralement reliée à l'animé, mais l'intentionnalité, entendue comme la capacité à contrôler le cours des événements pourrait être plus pertinente. La disponibilité de structures inaccusatives pour les verbes intransitifs a été mise en relation avec la notion de 'causation interne', dans laquelle la constitution interne d'une entité est telle que l'action verbale se produit inexorablement; il serait intéressant d'examiner cette idée à la lumière des théories des mondes d'inertie. Et les notions de causation paraissent également pertinentes pour la compréhension des constructions à verbes sériels.

Le deuxième domaine est l'aspect. Les formes ou lectures atéliques/imperfectives de syntagmes verbaux téliques expriment une interruption du cours naturel des événements calculé à partir des sens lexicaux des prédicats concernés. On a observé que la perfectivité interagit avec l'animation, impliquant peut-être là encore l'inertie et le contrôle - par exemple, les imperfectifs des verbes de permission sont possibles en grec et en italien avec des permetteurs animés mais pas avec des animés. Les formes verbales qui expriment des actions hors de contrôle, des actions ratées ou réussies ont été étudiées dans les langues austronésiennes et salish. Aborder l'aspect en prenant en compte les forces pourrait aider à comprendre comment ces formes interagissent avec l'aspect.

Le troisième domaine est la modalité. Par exemple, les mondes d'inertie peuvent être envisagés comme des mondes dans lesquel n'interviennent pas de forces externes dans une certaine chaîne causale d'événements. Une force proprement dite pourrait être considérée comme une impulsion vers un ensemble idéal de mondes, de sorte que toute modalité qui pourrait être décrite en termes de source ordonnante, pourrait l'être aussi en termes de forces. Les évidentiels, ainsi que les modalités de loi naturelle, de disposition et d'aptitude, traditionnellement toutes plus résistantes à des analyses en termes de mondes possibles pourraient voir leur traitement amélioré en envisageant comment représenter les forces.

Le quatrième centre d'intérêt est celui des relations causales dans le domaine des phrases complexes et l'étude des types de construction et des moyens morphosyntaxiques d'exprimer ces relations (ordre des propositions, particules conjonctives, prépositions, marqueurs pragmatiques, etc.). Les relations entre un événement antécédent et un événement consécutif peuvent être exprimées de diverses manières, comme des événements séquentiels basés sur l'ordre logique de l'implication (cause-conséquence) ou dans un ordre non séquentiel (conséquence-cause) basé sur des relations inférentielles ou épistémiques. Ces constructions ont souvent des fonctions argumentatives et discursives différentes et reflètent des types différents de hiérarchie syntaxique.

Ces quatre thèmes se recoupent sur de nombreux points, mais comme ils ressortissent à différentes parties de la structure syntagmatique, il est rare que les quatre soient discutés conjointement. Nous aimerions remédier à cette situation en réunissant des chercheurs intéressés par la questionde savoir comment les forces et les relations causales sont représentées dans les structures grammaticales. Conscients de ce que les linguistes ne sont pas les seuls intéressés par ces questions, nous accueillerons très volontiers des contributions venant de la psychologie, de la philosophie et du TAL; l'atelier sera structuré de manière à maximiser les échanges interdisciplinaires.

La réunion est envisagée comme hybride entre un atelier et une conférence, avec un nombre relativement élevé de conférenciers invités, dix à douze exposés non invités et une importante session de posters.

Nous sollicitons des contributions pour les conférences non-invitées et pour les posters, portants sur les sujets suivants, ou sur des thèmes connexes:

Comment la causation est-elle représentée dans les systèmes cognitifs, dans la sémantique et/ou dans la syntaxe?
Comment les forces physiques sont-elles représentées dans les systèmes cognitifs, dans la sémantique et/ou dans la syntaxe? Les ''forces mentales'' (intentions, obligations, lois humaines, information) sont-elles representées d'une manière similaire?
Qu'est-ce qu'un agent? Qu'est-ce qu'un causateur inanimé? Quelles sont les propriétés des forces qu'ils exercent et en quoi sont-elles pertinentes pour la grammaire?
Quelle est la relation entre l'acquisition du langage et l'acquisition de théories naïves de la physique ou de l'esprit ?

Des résumés sont sollicités pour des exposés de 20 minutes (suivis de 10 minutes de discussion), ainsi que pour la session de posters. Les soumissions sont limitées à un résumé individuel et un résumé collectif par auteur. Les résumés peuvent être en français ou en anglais.

Les résumés doivent être fichiers PDF, anonymes et limités à deux pages (avec des marges de 2,5 cm de tous les côtés et une police de 11 points). Toute police non standard devra être incluse dans un fichier PDF.

Nous préférons vivement les soumissions par courriel, envoyé à figs2007free.fr.

Veuillez envoyer le résumé en fichier joint, en inscrivant ''Abstract'' dans la zone ''sujet'' et fournir dans le corps du message les informations suivantes :

Nom(s) de l'auteur/des auteurs;
Affiliation(s) de l'auteur/des auteurs;
Email(s) de l'auteur/des auteurs;
Titre du résumé;
Le résumé doit-il être pris aussi en considération pour la session de posters?

Date limite de soumission : 20 octobre 2006

Notification de l'acceptation : 10 novembre 2006

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