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LINGUIST List 21.598

Fri Feb 05 2010

Calls: Computational Ling, Discipline of Ling, General Ling/Germany

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


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        1.    Jan Strunk, Empirical, Theoretical and Computational Approaches to Countability in Natural Language

Message 1: Empirical, Theoretical and Computational Approaches to Countability in Natural Language
Date: 03-Feb-2010
From: Jan Strunk <strunklinguistics.rub.de>
Subject: Empirical, Theoretical and Computational Approaches to Countability in Natural Language
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Full Title: Empirical, Theoretical and Computational Approaches to Countability
in Natural Language

Date: 22-Sep-2010 - 24-Sep-2010
Location: Bochum, Germany
Contact Person: Tibor Kiss
Meeting Email: countability2010linguistics.rub.de

Linguistic Field(s): Computational Linguistics; Discipline of Linguistics;
General Linguistics; Historical Linguistics

Call Deadline: 31-May-2010

Meeting Description:

Empirical, Theoretical and Computational Approaches to Countability in Natural
Language
A conference organized by the Linguistics Department (Sprachwissenschaftliches
Institut) of Ruhr­-Universität Bochum, Germany.
Ruhr­-Universität Bochum, September 22­-24, 2010

Call for Papers

Aims and scope:
The distinction between mass and count nouns has been addressed in a variety of
linguistic (and also extra­-linguistic) approaches. Initially, it has been
suggested that the distinction is a property of lexemes, or that it can be
derived from properties of the objects denoted by the respective nouns. This
assumption has been severely challenged by a variety of approaches, leading to
the assumption that countability is a property of constructions and phrases.
Yet, a critical survey of the most advanced work on the count­-mass distinction
has shown that
multiple, partially conflicting views on this phenomenon are still competing.

As an illustration for unsettled questions, consider the following:

- If the mass­-count distinction is actually dependent on formal syntactic
and/or semantic marking, how are nouns to be classified that lack such a
marking, e.g. nouns in preposition-­noun combinations (determinerless PPs)?

- If mass is taken to be a basic property of nouns to which syntactic marking
must be added to transform the noun into a count noun, why do certain languages
already require such marking for mass terms (e.g. Romance languages)?

- How can the apparent tension between theoretical constructional (i.e.
token-­based, and hence construction­-specific) and computational (i.e.
primarily type­-based, and hence possibly lexical class based) classification be
resolved?

The goal of this conference is to bring researchers from all areas of
linguistics together to clarify the numerous existing theories concerning the
count­-mass distinction and also to offer a platform for new insights and
constructive criticism.

We therefore invite original contributions which relate to the following issues
within or around the count­-mass distinction:

- Cross-­linguistic empirical and/or theoretical analysis of the count-mass
distinction
- Empirical and/or theoretical analysis of countability in a specific natural
language
- Psycholinguistic experiments
- Manual or computer-­aided classification/annotation of countability
- Historical/etymological contributions

Invited speakers:
- Hagit Borer (University of Southern California, Los Angeles)
- N.N.
- Henriette de Swart (OTS, Universiteit Utrecht)

Electronic Submission:
Abstracts no longer than six pages should be sent to
countability2010linguistics.rub.de
not later than May 31, 2010.

On behalf of the conference organizers
Jan Strunk
Sprachwissenschaftliches Institut
Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany
strunklinguistics.rub.de
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