LINGUIST List 9.1554

Thu Nov 5 1998

Calls: Generative Linguistics

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  1. glow99, Generative Linguistics: GLOW 99 Reminder

Message 1: Generative Linguistics: GLOW 99 Reminder

Date: Thu, 5 Nov 98 09:35:57 +0000
From: glow99 <>
Subject: Generative Linguistics: GLOW 99 Reminder

22nd GLOW Conference
Generative Linguistics in the Old World Conference
Berlin/Potsdam, 29.3-1.4.1999

The 1999 GLOW conference will be jointly organized by the ZAS
(Berlin), the University of
Potsdam and LOT (Netherlands Graduate School of Linguistics). The
 22nd GLOW colloquium will be held at the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy 
of Sciences (Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaften)
 located in the centre of Berlin, from 29th to 31st March 1999. The 
conference will then continue on April 1st with three parallel 
workshops held in Potsdam University, at the Griebnitzsee Campus.

Calls for Papers

The Colloquium: Universals

The search for universals has always been at the center of interest
in generative linguistics. Fundamental claims about universal
properties of language are what we build into the very architecture 
of the theory of UG: primitives (features etc.), combinatorial 
operations (Merge), the operation 'Move', interfaces with 
extralinguistic systems (LF, PF), etc. Alongside such formal 
universals, we also seek substantive universals in inventories, 
markedness patterns, feature hierarchies etc. Such facts may reflect
properties of UG itself or derive from extralinguistic sources.
Recent growth in crosslinguistic study opens new opportunities for
extending the empirical base, confirming or challenging old 
generalizations and establishing new ones. At the same time, recent
 theoretical developments in both phonology and syntax lead to
 important questions concerning the formal and/or substantive nature
 of universals in language, and the quest for the exact sources of 
variation between languages. 

In phonology, universals have typically been assumed to exist in 
many different subcomponents, e.g. features, prosodic constituents. 
Only in recent years, with the emergence of output-based evaluation 
systems, has the focus of interest in universals shifted to the study
of constraints and their interaction. Hence new questions arise: are 
all constraints universal in the sense that they are constitutive of
grammar? Should we conceive of constraints as being exhaustive and 
ordered? Are there universals that constraint orderings have to obey? 
Are there different domains (i.e. lexical and postlexical level) where 
constraints apply? Are there language-specific constraints? 

Syntactic theory in the early 80's assumed principles common to all
languages to interact with various types of 'macro-parameters': one 
deep property from which several other properties derive
(e.g. pro-drop parameter). Later, variation was attributed to
'micro-parameters'. Now, with the emergence of Minimalism and 
Optimality, basic issues like what constitutes a universal
principle / constraint, and what constitutes a parameter, need to
be re-addressed. Is there a universal inventory of functional 
heads/features? As to the autonomy of, or the division of labour 
between syntax and morphology: is parametrized variation confined
to inflectional systems? Is syntactic variation restricted to the
choice of overt or zero realization of a given feature? If all
movement takes place in a single cycle, does variation reduce to
the presence of affixes or the lack thereof? Are there universal
constraints in morpho-syntax? Moreover, in recent years it has been
argued that thematic relations are features. What are their
characteristics? Do these have a universal inventory? Could they 
be parametrized? Many typological-descriptive generalizations await 
theoretical integration - e.g. Greenbergian 'universals' of word 
order patterns, cross-categorial harmony effects, etc. In this respect, 
Kayne's proposal for a universal ordering merely shifts the burden 
from phrase structure to movement. 
A guiding heuristic of generative grammar has been that parsimonious 
(redundancy-free) theories are to be preferred; but Minimalism goes
further in suggesting that economy is built into UG itself. To what 
extent can the hypothesis that UG principles instantiate notions of 
economy be upheld? 

In studying UG, we take the external systems with which it interfaces 
to be invariant in linguistically significant senses across individuals
and languages. Thus we posit universal interpretation mechanisms (and 
uniformity across languages at LF), 'universal phonetics' (invariant 
articulatory / perceptual mechanisms), a universal parser, etc.; so 
that variation is confined to grammars, in particular 
phonology/morphology and aspects of the lexicon. Yet properties of
external systems may have far-reaching consequences for our view of
UG. As we learn more about them, universals attributed to UG may have
to be reassigned. What if UG-compatible grammars determine languages
that cannot exist because they are unuseable (unparseable;
unlearnable; etc)? Are there universal patterns in the acquisition 
process, in parsing strategies, etc., that can be brought to bear? 

The colloquium will consist of 20 talks of 45 minutes each plus 
discussion. Abstracts may not exceed 2 pages with at least a 1 inch 
margin on all four sides and should employ a font not smaller than 
12 pt. They should be sent anonymously in tenfold, accompanied by a 
camera-ready original with the author's name, address and affiliation

GLOW Selection Committee
c/o Artemis Alexiadou
Zentrum fuerr Allgemeine Sprachwissenschaft, Typologie 
und Universalienforschung
Jaergerstr. 10/11, 10117 Berlin
phone: +49-30-20192404/1
fax: +49-30-20192402

Deadline for submission of abstracts: December 1, 1998

Speakers will receive partial reimbursement for their expenses.
The following are approximate figures in ECU (1 ECU 1.10 US$):
 Faculty Grad. Students

 Germany 100 150

 Europe 200 300

 Rest of the World 300 400

The GLOW Workshops

Workshop I: Sources for Universals

Organizers: Gisbert Fanselow, Doug Saddy, Matthias Schlesewsky, 
Chris Wilder

Recent developments in syntax and phonology such as the Minimalist
Program or Optimality Theory have led to new insights into the 
structure of the human linguistic capacity. In the context of such 
theoretical developments, the conviction has grown that recourse to
innate properties of language cannot be the only explanation for the 
existence of certain generalizations of formal linguistic structure. 
The idea of the workshop "Sources for Universals" is to bring together
researchers from various fields inside and outside of syntax and 
phonology in order to identify possible sources for formal universals 
of natural language. 

Such possible sources could come from the following domains,
semantic universals consideration of processing difficulty 
considerations of laws of historical development for languages 
considersations of constraints on language acquisition biological
constraints in the sense of a "Universal Grammar" constraints 
inherent in the computational mechanisms serving language, 
This list is not meant to be exhaustive. Contributions which link
formal universals as discussed in recent grammatical models to any 
of such sources are particularly welcomed. 

Workshop II: Technical Aspects of Movement

Invited Speaker: Michael Brody , London/Budapest

Organizers: Jens Michaelis, Christian Wartena

Filler-Gap dependencies (FGD) belong to the most intriguing 
properties of natural language grammatical theories have to deal
with. Finding the right approach continues to be a matter of no
little controversy. Capturing the core properties of FGDs, concepts
of strictest c-command, which require fillers and their gaps to be
immediately attached to the same projection line, arguably possess a
high amount of naturalness or simplicity. This type ofconstraint is
directly reflected by Linear Indexed Grammars and has been implemented
in the minimalist extension condition on structure building. 
(Attempts to derive the c-command relation from the minimalist 
operation Merge take this strategy even further.) Yet, head-movement
configurations, analyzed as adjunction in the principles and 
parameters variant of generative grammar, seem to require weaker
versions of c-command, such that the adjoined head 'inherits'
the c-command domain of the head adjoined to. It is an open 
question, whether there are alternatives that do not - one way or
the other - employ similar auxiliary devices. As is well known, 
FGD-patterns (nested/crossed) have consequences for the generative
power of the grammars describing them. It is not properly understood,
however, which devices of which systems capture less orderly patterns
best. Systems using slash-categories or similar techniques seem to
run into considerable difficulty here. Feature-lists integrated into 
a checking theory of movement may be considered one of various 
alternatives. Most recently, the minimalist adoption of the "Copy 
Theory of Movement" opened up another array of related issues. How,
for example, do checking resources get eliminated if each step 
leading to elimination is preceded by a step of copying these 
resources? Are copies of NP/WH-moved constituents assumed to retain
properties of empty anaphors and syntactic variables respectively,
or has any reference to empty categories (e.g. ECP) and their 
potential link to Binding Theory become undefined? If the latter, 
could this change be motivated by complexity results concerning the 
powerful device of free indexation, as employed by GB Binding Theory?
Indeed, a general ban on the use of indices has been accompanying
the "Copy Theory of Movement". This calls for a demonstration how 
chains, the standard "legitimate LF-objects", which in alternative
versions of syntax are supposed to fully supplant movement, get 
handled without such devices. Primary properties to be defined on 
chains of copies, for example, would be PF-realizability as well as
the distinction between operator, variable, and descriptive content
status at LF (nontrivial consequences for the analyses of QR and ACD
being directly implied). Alternatively, it would be helpful to be
able to appreciate how far any worked-out proposals deviate from 
structure-sharing techniques as used in HPSG/LFG (a.o.), index
percolation devices from variants of Indexed Grammar, and other 
structure generating systems like Tree Adjoining Grammar or
Categorial Grammar. This workshop invites submissions of papers
shedding light on the above questions from both technical/formal
and linguistic angles. 

Workshop III: Phonetics in Phonology

Invited speakers: Edward Flemming, Donca Steriade

Organizers: Carlos Gussenhoven, Ren Kager

The workshop is broadly concerned with the relevance of
articulatory and perceptual facts for phonological theory. More
specifically, it intends to focus on such questions as the extent 
to which functional factors determine phonological grammars, the
status of the distinction between phonological representation and
phonetic implementation, the issue of multiple (articulation-based
as well as perception-based) phonological representations, and the
universality and `groundedness' of phonological constraints. 

Abstracts for workshops I, II and III are invited for 45 minute
presentations (plus 15 minutes dicussion). They should not exceed
one page/500 words. Please send five anonymous copies
(workshops I, II)/ three anonymous copies (workshop III) plus
a camera ready original (with author's name, address, and 
affiliation) to the address specified below. Speakers will be 
partially reimbursed for their expenses on the scale that applies
to the colloquium. 

GLOW Workshops I, II
c/o Matthias Schlesewsky
Institut fuer Linguistik
Universitaet Potsdam
Postfach 60 15 53
D 14415 Potsdam
phone: x49-331-977-2016
fax: x49-331-977-2761

GLOW Workshop III
c/o. Ren Kager
Utrecht Institute of Linguistics/OTS
Trans 10
3512 JK Utrecht
phone: +31-30-2538064
fax: +31-30-2536000

Deadline for submission of abstracts: December 1, 1998. 
Submission by fax or e-mail will not be accepted.
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