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LINGUIST List 23.605

Sun Feb 05 2012

Calls: Spanish, Syntax, Semantics, Language Acquisition/Spain

Editor for this issue: Alison Zaharee <alisonlinguistlist.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.     Isabel Pérez-Jiménez , International Workshop 'Ser & Estar at the Interfaces'

Message 1: International Workshop 'Ser & Estar at the Interfaces'
Date: 05-Feb-2012
From: Isabel Pérez-Jiménez <ser.estaruah.es>
Subject: International Workshop 'Ser & Estar at the Interfaces'
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Full Title: International Workshop 'Ser & Estar at the Interfaces'
Short Title: Ser & estar 2012

Date: 18-Oct-2012 - 19-Oct-2012
Location: Alcalá de Henares (Madrid), Spain
Contact Person: Isabel Pérez-Jiménez
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >
Web Site: http://www2.uah.es/ser_estar

Linguistic Field(s): Language Acquisition; Semantics; Syntax

Subject Language(s): Spanish

Call Deadline: 28-Feb-2012

Meeting Description:

The workshop seeks to bring together researchers working on different aspects of the 'ser/estar' distinction, in particular those related to the lexicon-syntax and syntax-semantics-pragmatics interfaces, mainly from a formal perspective. It will touch upon issues such as the relevance of the individual/stage level distinction in the distribution of copular verbs; aspectual coercion; aspectual composition; syntactic differences between copular verbs; information structure of predications with 'ser' and 'estar'; truth and non-truth conditional meaning of copular verbs.

Invited Speakers:

José Camacho (Rutgers University) & Karen Zagona (University of Washington)

2nd Call for Papers:

Papers may address - but are not limited to - the following questions:

- The meaning of 'ser' and 'estar'. What are the truth conditional /non-truth conditional semantic differences between the two Spanish copulae, 'ser' and 'estar'? Can the differences between these two verbs be described in davidsonian (eventive) terms, or in terms of different discourse-dependent properties? (cf. Clements 1988, Maienborn 2003, 2005, Schmitt 2005, Schmitt &Miller 2007, a.o.)

- The syntax of 'ser' and 'estar'. Are there syntactic differences between the two Spanish copulae? Should they be understood as differences in the featural content of these verbs, or as the result of a process of preposition incorporation? Can these differences explain the distributional (and also semantic) properties of these two verbs? (cf. Brucart 2009, Zagona 2009, Gallego & Uriagereka 2011, Camacho to appear, a.o.)

- Information structure. What are the differences between predications involving 'ser' and 'estar' regarding information structure? It has been claimed in the literature that the notions of thetic vs. categorial judgments or the notion of topic time are relevant to account for some differences between 'ser' and 'estar', for example with respect to word order (cf. Uriagereka & Raposo 1995, Maienborn 2005, Gallego & Uriagereka 2011).

- 'Ser/estar' as an aspectual distinction. What is the syntactic or semantic property that explains the selectional restrictions of 'ser' and 'estar'? It has generally been claimed that the different selectional properties of 'ser' and 'estar' are linked to aspectual notions (cf. Luján 1981, Fernández-Leborans 1995, Roby 2009, Zagona & Contreras 2011, Camacho to appear, among many others), and, crucially to the distinction between Individual and Stage level predicates (Leonetti 1994, Lema 1995, Bosque 1999, Escandell & Leonetti 2002, Marín 2004, 2010, Arche 2006, a.o.). However, it has been shown that the IL/SL distinction in fact cross-cuts but does not overlap with the 'ser/estar' distribution. Moreover, the properties of 'ser/estar' have been used to reject a view of the IL/SL distinction as a lexically encoded property (Gallego & Uriagereka 2011), or even as a grammatical phenomenon with a conceptual foundation (Maienborn 2005).

- Coercion as an interface phenomenon. In what contexts and under what conditions does the coercion mechanism generally associated with 'estar' take place? Why can only some adjectival predicates be coerced? What is the role played by the subject of the predication in the coercion process? How can the coercion process be characterized as an interface phenomenon? (cf. Demonte 1979, Escandell & Leonetti 2002, Brucart 2005, Romero 2009, Batllori & Roca in press, a.o.)

- Language acquisition. What can the first language acquisition process of 'ser/estar' tell us about the semantic/syntactic differences between the two copulas? What does the acquisition process of 'ser/estar' tell us about the relevance of semantic / pragmatic and syntactic cues in first language acquisition? (cf. Sera 1992, Holtheurer 2003, Schmitt et al. 2004, Schmitt el al. 2007, a.o.)

- Non-copular uses of 'ser' and 'estar'. Can the copular and non-copular uses of these verbs (in progressive verb forms, passives or locative sentences) receive a unified explanation? Is there a syntactic or semantic core common to all uses of these verbs? (cf. Brucart 2009, Gallego & Uriagereka 2011, Camacho to appear, a.o.)

- 'Ser' & 'estar' from a cross-linguistic / dialectal perspective. How can the cross-linguistic differences in the uses of the copulas equivalent to Spanish 'ser/estar' (for example in Portuguese and Catalan) be explained (cf. Brucart 2009, Gallego & Uriagereka 2011, a.o.)? And, more generally, how are the syntactic/semantic/pragmatic differences expressed by 'ser' and 'estar' shown in other languages lacking two different copulas (cf. Costa 1988, a.o.)?

10 talks will be selected among the submissions. Talks will be allotted 30 minutes for presentation plus 10 minutes for discussion. A poster session will take place on October 19.

Submission Guidelines:

- Abstracts must be submitted electronically via Easychair (http://www.easychair.org/conferences/?conf=serestar2012). Please, add 5 keywords and whether your submission is for an oral presentation, poster or both. Abstracts should be anonymous.
- Abstracts should not exceed two pages, including examples and references.
- Submissions are restricted to one single-authored and one co-authored abstract at most.
- The conference language is English: abstracts and talks will be in English.
- Page format: A4, 2.5 cm margins on all sides, at least 12 pt Times New Roman font, single line spacing.
- File format: .pdf
- File name: surname.pdf

Recall that the deadline for abstract submission is February 28 2012, and that notifications of acceptance will be sent by April, 30.


Arche, M. J. 2006. Individuals in Time. Tense, Aspect and the individual/stage distinction, Amsterdam, John Benjamins.
Bosque, I. 1999. 'El sintagma adjetival. Modificadores y complementos del adjetivo. Adjetivo y participio', in I. Bosque & V. Demonte (dirs.), Gramática descriptiva de la lengua española, Madrid, RAE-Espasa Calpe, chapter 4.
Batllori, M. & F. Roca. In press. 'Grammaticalisation of ser and estar in Romance', in D. Jonas (ed.), Grammatical Change: Origins, Nature, Outcomes, Oxford, Oxford University Press.
Brucart, J. M. 2009. 'La alternancia ser / estar y las construcciones atributivas de localización', in A. Avellana (comp.), Actas del V Encuentro de Gramática Generativa, 2009, Neuquén, EDUCO.
Camacho, J. to appear. 'Ser and estar: The individual/stage level distinction and aspectual predication', to appear in the Blackwell Handbook of Hispanic linguistics.
Clements, J. C. 1988. 'The semantics and pragmatics of the Spanish Copula + Adjective construction', Linguistics, 26, 779-822.
Costa, J. 1998. 'L'opposition ser/estar en Portugais', en A. Rouveret (ed.), 'Être' et 'avoir' - Syntaxe, sémantique, typologie, Sciences du Langage, Presses Universitaires de Vincennes, 139-153.
Demonte, V. 1979. 'Semántica y sintaxis en las construcciones con ser y estar', Revista Española de Lingüística, 9, 133-171.
Escandell, V. & M. Leonetti. 2002. 'Coercion and the stage/individual distinction', in J. Gutiérrez-Rexach (ed.), Semantics and Pragmatics of Spanish, Amsterdam, Elsevier.
Gallego, A. & J. Uriagereka. 2009. 'Estar = ser + P', talk given at the XIX Colloquium on Generative Grammar, April 1-3 2009, Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea, Vitoria-Gasteiz.
Gallego, A. & J. Uriagereka. 2011. 'The lexical syntax of ser and estar'. Ms. Universitat Autónoma de Barcelona & U. Maryland.
Holtheuer, C. 2003. The acquisition of the copula in Spanish child language. Masters Thesis. Michigan State University.
Leborans, M. J. 1995. 'Las construcciones con el verbo estar: aspectos sintácticos y semánticos', Verba, 22, 253-284.
Lema, J. 1995. 'Distinguishing Copular and Aspectual Auxiliaries: Spanish Ser and Estar', in J. Amastae, G. Goodall, M. Montalbetti & M. Phinney (eds.), Contemporary Research in Romance Linguistics, Amsterdam, Benjamins, 257-274.
Leonetti, M. 1994. 'Ser y estar: estado de la cuestión', Barataria, 1, 182-205.
Luján, M. 1981. 'The Spanish copulas as aspectual indicators', Lingua, 54, 165-210.
Maienborn, C. 2003. 'Against a Davidsonian analysis of copula sentences', NELS 33 Proceedings, GLSA, 167-186.
Maienborn, C. 2005. 'A discourse-based account of Spanish ser/estar', Linguistics, 43,1, 155-180.
Marín, R. 2004. Entre ser y estar, Madrid, Arco Libros.
Marín, R. 2010. 'Spanish adjectives within bounds', in P. Cabredo y O. Matushansky (eds.), Adjectives: formal analyses in syntax and semantics, Amsterdam, John Benjamins, 307-331.
Roby, D. B. 2009. Aspect and the categorization of States. The case of ser and estar in Spanish, Amsterdam, John Benjamins.
Romero, J. 2009. 'El sujeto en las construcciones copulativas', Verba 2009, 36, 195-214
Schmitt, C. & Miller, K. 2007. 'Making discourse-dependent decisions: The case of the copulas ser and estar in Spanish', Lingua, 117, 11, 1907-1929.
Schmitt, C. 2005. 'Semi-copulas: Event and aspectual composition', in P. Kempchinsky & R. Slabakova (eds.), Syntax, semantics and the acquisition of aspect, Springer, Kluwer, 121-145.
Schmitt, C., C. Holtheuer & K. Miller. 2004. 'Acquisition of copulas ser and estar in Spanish: learning lexico-semantics, syntax, and discourse', in Proceedings of Boston University Conference on Language Development, Cascadilla Press, Somerville, MA.
Sera, M. D. 1992. 'To be or to be: use and acquisition of the Spanish copulas', Journal of Memory and Language, 31, 408-427.
Uriagereka, J. & E. Raposo. 1995. 'Two Types of Small Clauses (Toward a Syntax of Theme/Rheme Relations)', in A. Cardinaletti and M.T. Guasti (eds.), Small Clauses (Syntax and Semantics 28), New York, Academic Press, 179-206.
Zagona, K. & H. Contreras. 2011. 'Sobre la incompatibilidad entre ser y los adjetivos con complemento', in M. V. Escandell, M. Leonetti & C. Sánchez (eds.), 60 Problemas de gramática, Madrid, Akal.
Zagona, K. 2009. 'Ser and Estar: Phrase structure and aspect,' to appear in Cahiers Chronos, Proceedings of 2008 Chronos, Austin, University of Texas.

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