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The Social Origins of Language

By Daniel Dor

Presents a new theoretical framework for the origins of human language and sets key issues in language evolution in their wider context within biological and cultural evolution


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Preposition Placement in English: A Usage-Based Approach

By Thomas Hoffmann

This is the first study that empirically investigates preposition placement across all clause types. The study compares first-language (British English) and second-language (Kenyan English) data and will therefore appeal to readers interested in world Englishes. Over 100 authentic corpus examples are discussed in the text, which will appeal to those who want to see 'real data'


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Free access to several Brill linguistics journals, such as Journal of Jewish Languages, Language Dynamics and Change, and Brill’s Annual of Afroasiatic Languages and Linguistics.


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Traitement Automatique des Langues

Call Deadline: 15-Oct-2013

Call Information:
Call for Papers

TAL Journal (Special Issue):
Social Networks and Natural Language Processing
2013 - Volume 54, Number 3

Guest Editors:
- Atefeh Farzindar, NLP Technologies and Univ. de Montréal, Canada
- Mathieu Roche, LIRMM (CNRS, Univ. Montpellier 2) and TETIS (Cirad, Irstea, AgroParisTech), France


Social networks, dynamic structures comprised of individuals or organizations, have always played a major role in our societies. They have evolved and diversified with the Web 2.0, which offers users the possibility to create and share content through multiple platforms (blogs, micro-blogs, wikis, sharing sites, etc.). In this environment, the unprecedented volume and variety of textual data as well as the users' interaction network give rise to new opportunities to better understand social behavior. The study of messages exchanged represents a new challenge in Natural Language Processing. In this context, it becomes interesting to discuss the strength of NLP methods (morphosyntactic analysers, systems of term extraction and of named entity recognition, etc.) on this data. In this special issue, new approaches will be presented for the purpose of analysing this massive, heterogeneous and usually noisy textual data coming from social networks.

In addition, these means of communication are powerful collective tools where language is both invented and experienced with. Certain words are then attributed new meanings, and the creation of words or new syntactic structures becomes widespread (for example, by mixing different languages). The creation, dissemination and processing of this original vocabulary can be discussed in this special issue, which, in a broader perspective, will highlight a new way to communicate.

Some metadata (for example, the hashtags) and the linguistic descriptors originating from texts constitute a solid base for the analysis of social networks. They bring to the fore different socio-economic, political and geographic communities, just to name a few. In addition, the linguistic descriptors, whether they are words or syntagmatic relations, allow for a precise analysis of the feelings and opinions contained in the messages. For example, the lexical, graphic and even syntactic specificities (emoticons, abbreviations, character repetition, etc.) in the text data contain valuable information allowing for the detection of opinions or analysis of feelings (fine detection of emotions, identification of irony, etc.).

Finally, this special issue will be an opportunity to describe new problems arising from social networks development. For example, systems that monitor social networks must be able to detect potential usurpers or study the dissemination of information. This special issue offers the opportunity to present original applications adapted to the processing of textual data that stems from social networks.

Important Dates

Submission of abstracts: October 15, 2013
Submission of articles: October 29, 2013
First notification to authors: December 20, 2013
Submission of revised articles: February 1, 2014
Final notification: April 15, 2014
Final version: June 15, 2014

Useful Information

The articles (25 pages, PDF format) must be uploaded on the platform http://tal-54-3.sciencesconf.org/. Style sheets are available on the web site of the journal (http://www.atala.org/-revue-tal). The journal only publishes original contributions, in French or in English. Submissions in English will be accepted only from non-francophone authors.


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