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LINGUIST List 19.3715

Thu Dec 04 2008

Calls: Historical Ling,Syntax/Greece; General Ling/Canada

Editor for this issue: Kate Wu <katelinguistlist.org>

LINGUIST is pleased to announce the launch of an exciting new feature: Easy Abstracts! Easy Abs is a free abstract submission and review facility designed to help conference organizers and reviewers accept and process abstracts online. Just go to: http://www.linguistlist.org/confcustom, and begin your conference customization process today! With Easy Abstracts, submission and review will be as easy as 1-2-3!
        1.    Nikolaos Lavidas, Typology of Labile Verbs: Focus on Diachrony
        2.    Emanuel da Silva, Convergences/Divergences Grad Student Conf in French

Message 1: Typology of Labile Verbs: Focus on Diachrony
Date: 03-Dec-2008
From: Nikolaos Lavidas <nlavidasotenet.gr>
Subject: Typology of Labile Verbs: Focus on Diachrony
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Full Title: Typology of Labile Verbs: Focus on Diachrony

Date: 03-Apr-2009 - 05-Apr-2009
Location: Thessaloniki, Greece, Greece
Contact Person: Leonid Kulikov
Meeting Email: L.Kulikovhum.leidenuniv.nl
Web Site: http://www.enl.auth.gr/symposium19/

Linguistic Field(s): Historical Linguistics; Morphology; Syntax; Typology

Call Deadline: 15-Dec-2008

Meeting Description:

The workshop will bring together scholars interested in labile verbs, i.e. verbs
which can show valency alternation, or changes in syntactic pattern, with no
formal change in the verb (cf. Eng. open, break). It aims to open up new
horizons in the theoretical and typological research of this phenomenon, paying
special attention to its diachronic aspects.

Call for Papers

The term 'labile' refers to verbs or verbal forms which can show valency
alternation, i.e. changes in syntactic pattern, with no formal change in the
verb. Very often (but not always) the term 'labile' is only employed to refer to
verbs (or verbal forms) which can be employed both transitively and
intransitively, as in (1-2); some scholars use other, less widely accepted terms
in this sense, such as 'ambitransitive' (R. M. W. Dixon 1994) or 'optionally
transitive' (J. G. Miller 1993):
(1) English
a. John broke the vase
b. The vase broke
(2) Greek
a. O Janis efage mesimeriano
the:NOM Janis:NOM ate:3SG lunch:ACC
'Janis ate lunch'
b. O Janis efage
the:NOM Janis:NOM ate:3SG
'Janis ate'
(1) exemplifies Patient-preserving lability (P-lability), while (2) instantiates
an Agent-preserving lability (A-lability). Other types of syntactic alternation,
such as locative alternation (cf. John sprayed paint on the wall ~ John sprayed
the wall with paint) or dative shift (Mary gave John an apple ~ Mary gave an
apple to John) are usually treated separately from P- and A-lability. Of
particular interest is P-lability, common in ergative-absolutive languages (for
instance, in many Daghestan languages), quite frequent also in some
nominative-accusative languages (such as English, Greek, German or French), but
(almost) entirely lacking in many others (e.g. in Slavic or Uralic).
Although there are a number of studies dealing with this phenomenon in
individual languages, such as English (e.g. Keyser & Roeper 1984; McMillion
2006), French (Larjavaara 2000), Greek (Alexiadou & Anagnostopoulou 1999, 2004,
Theophanopoulou-Kontou 1983-4, 2004, Tsimpli 1989, 2006) and some others, a
cross-linguistic study of lability is rather neglected (with a few exceptions
such as Letuchiy 2006). Even less attention has been paid to the diachronic
aspects of labile verbs. In many cases, we cannot explain why and how the
lability emerges and disappears. We do not know why in several languages labile
verbs become more productive and the class of labile verbs is constantly
increasing (as in English, Greek or some Daghestan languages), while in some
other languages this class is decreasing (as in Sanskrit) or entirely lacking
(as in modern Turkic or Kartvelian languages). Only a few mechanisms responsible
for the emergence of lability (such as the phonetic merger of transitive and
intransitive forms or the deletion of the reflexive pronoun, attested in the
history of English) are mentioned in the literature. The few studies dealing
with the diachronic aspects of labile verbs, their rise, development or decay
and loss include Kitazume 1996 (on English), Kulikov 2003 (on Vedic Sanskrit)
and Lavidas 2004 (on Greek).

The idea of our workshop is to bring together scholars interested in lability
and to open up new horizons in the research of this phenomenon, paying special
attention to its diachronic aspects. The issues to be addressed include:

Theoretical and descriptive aspects of a study of labile verbs:
- should such verbs be treated as one lexical unit with two different syntactic
uses or as two separate lexical units,
- which of the two constructions may be considered as basic (transitive or

Issues in a synchronic typological study of lability:
- for which semantic and syntactic classes of verbs is the labile pattern
particularly common or uncommon?
- are there any correlations between the grammatical characteristics of a form
and its lability?
- labile patterning of finite vs. non-finite forms (infinitives, participles etc.)
- relationships between labile verbs, voices and valency-changing categories
- types of lability (cf. reflexive lability: Mary washed the baby ~ Mary washed;
reciprocal lability: Mary and John kissed the baby ~ Mary and John kissed; etc.)

Particularly encouraged are papers dealing with diachronic aspects of lability:
- mechanisms of the emergence and expansion of labile verbs (as e.g. in English
or Greek)
- mechanisms of the decay and disappearance of labile verbs (as e.g. in Vedic)
- which semantic and syntactic classes of verbs tend to become labile or non-labile
- lability considered as an instance of syncretism (of transitive and
intransitive) and its possible relationships with other types of syncretism or
grammatical homonymy
- what are the main evolutionary types of lability attested for Indo-European
and other language families and groups with a well-documented history?
- what is the position of Indo-European in a diachronic typological
classification of lability types?

The workshop will be organized within the 19th International Symposium on
Theoretical and Applied Linguistics (ISTAL 19), Thessaloniki, Greece, 3-5 April
2009. Please visit http://www.enl.auth.gr/symposium19, where you will also find
practical information.
Only electronic submissions by e-mail will be considered. Abstracts should be
300-500 words long, not exceeding one page (A4). Please send the one-page
abstract of your paper by 15 December 2008 to: L.Kulikovhum.leidenuniv.nl
Applicants will be notified on abstract acceptance by 15 January 2009.

Leonid Kulikov, Nikolaos Lavidas
Message 2: Convergences/Divergences Grad Student Conf in French
Date: 03-Dec-2008
From: Emanuel da Silva <emanuel.dasilvautoronto.ca>
Subject: Convergences/Divergences Grad Student Conf in French
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Full Title: Convergences/Divergences Grad Student Conf in French
Short Title: SESDEF 2009

Date: 08-May-2009 - 09-May-2009
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Contact Person: Rosa Saverino
Meeting Email: r.saverinoutoronto.ca
Web Site: http://www.chass.utoronto.ca/french/SESDEF/

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

Subject Language(s): French (fra)

Call Deadline: 02-Feb-2009

Meeting Description:

'Convergences / Divergences : Au carrefour des idées' 8-9 mai, 2009

The 'Société des Études supérieures du Département d'Études françaises' (SESDEF)
at the University of Toronto is pleased to host its annual conference designed
to give graduate students from across North America and around the world a
chance to present their original research in all fields related to
French/Francophone studies: linguistics, literature, cultural studies,
anthropology, etc.
Please see the call for papers for more details (en français).
Submission deadline for 250-500 word abstracts, in French, is February 2, 2009.

Appel à Contribution

La Société des Études Supérieures du Département d'Études Françaises (SESDEF) de
l'Université de Toronto lance un appel à communication aux étudiants de maîtrise
et de doctorat en études françaises.

Cette année, le comité organisateur recherche des communications de vingt
minutes portant sur le thème : Convergences / divergences : Au carrefour des idées.
Que représentent ces notions ? Quelles en sont les enjeux ? Est-ce que les
convergences entraînent forcément des divergences ? Ou, au contraire, s'agit-il
de concepts qui s'excluent mutuellement ? Autant de questions que nous aimerions
aborder lors du colloque qui se tiendra les 8 et 9 mai 2009 à Toronto, campus

Ce colloque est ouvert à des communications se rapportant à toute période
historique et faisant appel à toute approche méthodologique. Les participant-e-s
sont invité-e-s à proposer des réflexions théoriques ou des études (de cas ou de
corpus) en français s'articulant autour des axes suivants :

- convergences et/ou divergences sociolinguistiques (pratiques langagières,
phonétique, emprunts, créoles, etc.)
- convergences et/ou divergences de linguistique théorique (des
traits/caractéristiques morphologiques ou phonologiques, syntaxiques ou
sémantiques, pragmatiques ou discursifs, en synchronie ou diachronie)
- convergences et/ou divergences de la linguistique expérimentale (acquisition
de la langue première/seconde, attrition, psycholinguistique, neurolinguistique)
- convergences et/ou divergences intergénérationnelles ou transgénérationnelles
en littératures
- convergences et/ou divergences disciplinaires (études sollicitant plusieurs
disciplines en relation avec la littérature et/ou la linguistique)
- convergences et/divergences de l'écrivain par rapport à lui-même ou son
lecteur (l'écrivain et son double, relation écrivain/lecteur)
- convergences et/ou divergences du texte (intertextualité, du texte à l'image)
- convergences et/ou divergences de l'autre dans la littérature (altérité,
hybridité, monstruosité, écritures migrantes)
- espaces de convergences et/ou de divergences (espace narratif, espace de la
réception, espace discursif)

Les propositions de communications de 250 à 500 mots doivent être envoyées avant
le 2 février 2009 à l'adresse suivante :

SESDEF : Colloque estudiantin
Département d'Études françaises
Université de Toronto
50, Rue St. Joseph, 2e étage
Toronto, ON, M5S 1J4

Vous pouvez aussi envoyer vos propositions de communication par courrier
électronique à Rosa Saverino : r.saverinoutoronto.ca

Après la date butoir, le comité de sélection se réunira pour sélectionner les
propositions et un courrier électronique sera envoyé fin février aux
participants retenus.

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