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LINGUIST List 18.3548

Tue Nov 27 2007

Calls: Historical Ling, Ling Theories/UK; Discourse Analysis/USA

Editor for this issue: Ania Kubisz <anialinguistlist.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.
Directory
        1.    Gunther De Vogelaer, Dialects as a Testing Ground for Theories of Change
        2.    Max Louwerse, Society for Text and Discourse


Message 1: Dialects as a Testing Ground for Theories of Change
Date: 27-Nov-2007
From: Gunther De Vogelaer <gunther.devogelaerugent.be>
Subject: Dialects as a Testing Ground for Theories of Change
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Full Title: Dialects as a Testing Ground for Theories of Change

Date: 04-Aug-2008 - 08-Aug-2008
Location: Leeds, United Kingdom
Contact Person: Gunther De Vogelaer
Meeting Email: gunther.devogelaerugent.be

Linguistic Field(s): General Linguistics; Historical Linguistics; Linguistic
Theories

Call Deadline: 01-Dec-2007

Meeting Description

Much theorizing in language change research is made without taking into account
dialect data. However, we believe that the study of dialect variation has the
potential to play a central role in the process of finding answers to the
fundamental questions of theoretical historical linguistics. Unlike most
cross-linguistic and diachronic data, dialect data are unusually high in
resolution, and they seem to be superior data to build a theory of linguistic
change on.
In the present one-day workshop we invite contributions which relate a clearly
formulated theoretical question of historical linguistic interest with a
well-defined, solid empirical base. The following provides a (non-exhaustive)
list of suggested research questions:
- Which is the contribution of current linguistic theory for the explanation of
spatial variation and variant spread?
- Which is the contribution of dialect data for the further development of
theories of linguistic change?
- What are the driving forces of variant selection? Are these factors social or
linguistic?
- Is variation the result or the cause of change, or both?

We welcome papers dealing with all domains of grammar (phonology, morphology,
syntax, semantics), and we intend to cover a wide variety of languages. In
particular, we encourage papers adopting a dialect geographical approach.

Final Call for Papers

'Dialects as a Testing Ground for Theories of Change' (1-day session at Methods
in Dialectology XIII)

In recent years, historical linguists have highlighted the importance of
grammatical variation and variant spread for our understanding of the
fundamental mechanisms of linguistic change. Many approaches distinguish between
the emergence of novel variants vs. the selection of variants in the course of
speakers' use (cf., e.g., Weinreich, Labov & Herzog's 1968 distinction between
the 'actuation' and 'transition problem'). This is most obvious in evolutionary
inspired approaches. But the perhaps most central ingredient of a model for
linguistic change is still relatively little understood, and therefore
controversial: Which factors are responsible for variant selection and spread?
For instance, Croft (2000) assumes language-internal factors to be relevant only
for the emergence of novel variants, but variant selection is claimed to be
guided exclusively by social, extra-linguistic factors. Others (Haspelmath 1999,
Seiler 2005, De Vogelaer 2006) have claimed that language-internal factors play
a role in variant selection, too.

It is our opinion that the study of dialect variation has the potential to play
a central role in the process of finding answers to such fundamental questions
(see Kortmann 2002, Horvath 2004, and Filppula et al. 2005:vii for similar
observations). There are several reasons for this: First, dialects are
relatively free of standardization and therefore more tolerant against variant
competition in grammar. Second, variants gradually spread not only on the
temporal, but also on the spatial dimension. By a careful study of subtle
dialect differences in space we therefore might expect to uncover the minimal
differences of implementational steps that have taken place in the course of
linguistic history. Furthermore, we think it is the right time for
dialectologists to engage in debates on variation and change since there are
several large research projects on dialect variation being conducted in a number
of European countries (cf. the recently launched website
http://www.dialectsyntax.org/). The following provides a (non-exhaustive) list
of suggested research questions:
- Which is the contribution of current linguistic theory for the explanation of
spatial variation and variant spread?
- Which is the contribution of dialect data for the further development of
theories of linguistic change?
- What are the driving forces of variant selection? Are these factors social or
linguistic?
- Is variation the result or the cause of change, or both?

In particular, we encourage papers adopting a dialect geographical approach.
Additional questions that emerge when taking a dialect geographical approach
have to do with the existence of transitional zones, where competing variants
co-occur. This poses a potential problem for many models of grammar: what does
the existence of transitional zones mean for our modeling of linguistic
competence, i.e., can the linguistic competence of individuals living in
transitional zones best be described in terms of competing grammars, the
interaction of categorical rules or constraints, or do we need a probabilistic
model? Other relevant questions include the following:
- Do geolinguistic data provide evidence for and/or against particular models of
change?
- What can we conclude from the mechanisms of variant spread with regard to our
understanding of linguistic competence?
- Can we find a speaker-based explanation for the fact that some variants spread
at the expense of others?

Organizers
Gunther De Vogelaer (FWO Flanders / Ghent), Guido Seiler (Konstanz / Zurich).

Keynote speaker
William Labov (University of Pennsylvania)

Practical information
The workshop is part of the Methods in Dialectology-conference. More information
concerning travelling, lodging etc. can be found on the Methods XIII-homepage:
http://www.leeds.ac.uk/english/methods.htm

Publication
Since it is our intention to publish a volume with papers from the section, we
will prefer unpublished research over papers presenting data that have been
published elsewhere.

Format
Presentations are allotted 20 minutes plus 10 minutes for discussion. Abstracts
should be as specific as possible, with a statement of topic, approach and
conclusions, and may be at most 400 words (not including data and references,
which may be placed on an optional second page). Please submit your abstract
anonymously as an email attachment (only Microsoft Word or PDF formats) to
Gunther De Vogelaer (gunther.devogelaerugent.be) or Guido Seiler
(gseilerds.unizh.ch). The body text of the email message must contain the
following information:
(1) paper title
(2) name(s) of author(s)
(3) affiliation(s) of author(s)
(4) address where notification of acceptance should be sent
(5) phone number for each author
(6) email address for each author
(7) subfield (syntax, phonology, etc.)
Message 2: Society for Text and Discourse
Date: 26-Nov-2007
From: Max Louwerse <mlouwersmemphis.edu>
Subject: Society for Text and Discourse
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Full Title: Society for Text and Discourse
Short Title: ST&D

Date: 12-Jul-2008 - 15-Jul-2008
Location: Memphis, TN, USA
Contact Person: Max Louwerse
Meeting Email: conferencesocietyfortextanddiscourse08.org
Web Site: http://www.societyfortextanddiscourse08.org

Linguistic Field(s): Applied Linguistics; Discourse Analysis; General
Linguistics; Ling & Literature

Call Deadline: 08-Feb-2008

Meeting Description
The Society for Text and Discourse will hold its 18th Annual Meeting in the
FedEx Institute of Technology at the University of Memphis July 12-15, 2008
(http://www.societyfortextanddiscourse08.org).

Important Dates
Deadline papers ST&D Conference: February 8, 2008.
ST&D Workshop: July 11-12, 2008
ST&D Conference: July 12-15, 2008

Society for Text and Discourse
The Society for Text & Discourse (http://www.societyfortextanddiscourse.org) is
an international society of researchers who investigate all aspects of discourse
processing and text analysis. The purpose of the Society is to consolidate
research in discourse processing and to enhance communication among researchers
in different disciplines. A second objective of the society is to contribute to
the education and professional development of those in the field or entering the
field (http://www.societyfortextanddiscourse08.org).

18th ST&D Conference
The 18th Annual Meeting of the Society will be held in the FedEx Institute of
Technology at the University of Memphis July 12-15, 2008.

Keynote speakers include Susan Brennan and Nick Chater.
Susan Brennan (http://www.psychology.stonybrook.edu/sbrennan-/) is Associate
Professor in the Departments of Psychology and Computer Science at S.U.N.Y. at
Stony Brook. She is internationally known for her work on interactive spoken
dialogue.
Nick Chater (http://www.psychol.ucl.ac.uk/people/profiles/chater_nick.htm) is
Professor of Cognitive and Decision Sciences, Department of Psychology,
University College London. He is the well-known for his work on language
acquisition and language evolution.

The ST&D Conference will be preceded by the Society for Text and Discourse
workshop (July 11-12).

The ST&D Workshop and Conference are preceded by the IGEL Conference July 8-11,
2008, and the IGEL Summer Institute, July 5-7 (http://igelweb.org/igelweb/IGEL2008).

Accommodation
A block of hotel rooms has been reserved in The Holiday Inn Hotel at the
University of Memphis and the DoubleTree Hotel Memphis. Announcements for
reservations will follow.

The Holiday Inn Hotel at the University of Memphis is an all-suite hotel
centrally located in the heart of Memphis and easily accessible to downtown, the
airport, and shopping. The hotel is adjacent to the University of Memphis.
Prices for the reserved block of rooms are $109 per night.

The Doubletree Memphis provides lodging in Memphis near the University of
Memphis and Memphis International Airport. It is surrounded by a variety of
entertainment, recreation, theater and restaurants. The hotel has a
complementary shuttle service to and from the airport. Prices for the reserved
block of rooms are $104 per night.

In addition, dormitory rooms (2 persons sharing rooms) have been made available
for discount rates in the Richardson Tower dormitory rooms accommodations at the
University of Memphis campus. Prices are $35 per night.

Questions
For questions or suggestions, please contact
conferencesocietyfortextanddiscourse08.org. The Society's conference website
will be updated regularly with the latest information on the conference
(http://www.societyfortextanddiscourse08.org).

Presentations at the 18th Annual Meeting can be in the form of posters or spoken
papers. The deadline for submitting proposals for both presentation formats is
February 8, 2008. A Review Committee will review the proposals, and authors will
be notified regarding acceptance by the end of March 2008.

Please submit proposals in English to the website that will be made available
towards the deadline (please see http://www.societyfortextanddiscourse08.org).

Papers will be scheduled for 20 minutes, with an additional 5 minutes for
questions and discussion. Posters are scheduled for a poster session on the
second night of the conference.

Proposals for symposia (sessions with multiple papers) should be discussed with
the conference organizers prior to submission and follow the same procedure as
proposals for papers.

Format
Submissions should include a 2-3 page summary of the presentation (max. 1000
words, including bibliographic references) according to the specifications made
available on http://www.societyfortextanddiscourse08.org towards the deadline
(February 8, 2008).

The Outstanding Student Paper Award
The Outstanding Student Paper Award (OPSA) recognizes quality in work that is
predominantly that of a graduate student. Accordingly, the student must be first
author on the paper.

The Jason Albrecht Outstanding Young Scientist Award
The Jason Albrecht Outstanding Young Scientist Award (JAOYSA) honors the memory
of Jason Albrecht, a promising young text and discourse researcher who passed
away in 1996. The award recognizes an outstanding paper based on a doctoral
dissertation. The doctoral candidate must be first author on the paper.

Recipients of each award receive a commemorative certificate and a $150 award check.

Proposals that are eligible for awards undergo two reviews - one by the regular
program committee and a second one by the Awards Review Committee. Only
proposals that are accepted for presentation as spoken papers will be considered
for the awards.

Questions
For questions or suggestions, please contact
conferencesocietyfortextanddiscourse08.org. The Society's conference website
will be updated regularly with the latest information on the conference
(http://www.societyfortextanddiscourse08.org).





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