LINGUIST List 23.5048

Mon Dec 03 2012

Calls: Spanish, Catalan, Syntax/Spain

Editor for this issue: Alison Zaharee <>

Date: 03-Dec-2012
From: Ángel J. Gallego <>
Subject: International Workshop ‘The Syntactic Variation of Catalan and Spanish Dialects’
E-mail this message to a friend

Full Title: International Workshop ‘The Syntactic Variation of Catalan and Spanish Dialects’ Short Title: SYNVADISPACAT
Date: 26-Jun-2013 - 28-Jun-2013 Location: Barcelona, Spain Contact Person: Ángel J. Gallego, Francesc Roca
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >

Linguistic Field(s): Syntax

Subject Language(s): Catalan-Valencian-Balear; Spanish

Call Deadline: 17-Feb-2013

Meeting Description:

Even though Catalan and Spanish have been the focus of much theoretical and empirical research within the generative framework, most attention has been paid to specific phenomena (clitics, doubling, verb movement, subjunctive, agreement, differential object marking, etc.) or specific cross-linguistic contrasts (English-Spanish, French-Spanish, Italian-Spanish, Catalan-Spanish, etc.). These and other factors made it difficult to construct comprehensive dialectal route-maps of these languages. Even in recent large-scale descriptive surveys (cf. Bosque & Demonte 1999, RAE-ASALE 2009, 2011, Solà et al. 2002), the role of dialectal varieties of Catalan and Spanish has not been at the forefront of formal studies.

As is well-known, the interest in finding out what the relevant varieties of Catalan and Spanish are has typically focused on the domains of lexicology, morphology, and phonology, where much descriptive work has been done since the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In the domain of syntax, however, little work can be found, a singularity that is reflected in the availability of few major studies of variation of Catalan and Spanish dialects (cf. Kany 1945, Veny 1978). This situation is unexpected, given the recent meticulous work on syntactic variation in other Romance languages (most notably, Italian; cf. D’Alessandro et al. 2010 and references therein).

Ever since the fifties, syntactic theory has developed and put in practice methods and tools to complement previous structuralist comparative work (atlases, corpora, etc.), making it possible to approach dialectal variation in a comprehensive and fine-grained fashion. The methods and tools have the generative framework as a source (Chomsky 1965, 1981, and subsequent work), and this source has proved useful in characterizing several languages and establishing points of uniformity (principles / universals) and points of variation (i.e., parameters). Given the availability of these tools and the ever-present interest in studying the variation/uniformity tension, there is no reason why studies on syntactic variation should not become an important focus of research. This has been complemented and backed up with a growing interest and concern in the area of generative grammar, including more careful and detailed comparative studies, paying much attention to language internal (dialectal) variation. Both viewpoints can be said to naturally stem from the Principles & Parameters framework of the early eighties, which gave rise to the key notion of ‘parameter,’ which has been investigated from both MACRO and MICRO perspectives (Baker 1996, 2001, 2008, Biberauer 2008, Biberauer et al. 2010, Cinque & Kayne 2005, Kayne 2000, 2005, among many others).

The present workshop aims at stimulating the study of the syntactic phenomena of Catalan and Spanish that show variation, hoping that it will help set the stage for subsequent investigations on the syntactic variation of these languages, deepen its relationship with other Romance cognates, and improve our understanding of the faculty of language.

The workshop will take place at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (Bellaterra, Barcelona), in June 26-28, 2013.

Invited Speakers:

Roberta D’Alessandro (University of Leiden)
Anna Bartra (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona)
Eulàlia Bonet (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona)
Inés Fernández-Ordóñez (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Real Academia Española)
Francisco Ordóñez (Stony Brook University)

Call for Papers:

Abstracts are invited for oral presentations (30-minute presentation plus 10-minute discussion) on any topic that contributes to improving our understanding of the syntactic variation of Catalan and Spanish dialects, including, but not limited to the following issues:

- Synchronic syntactic phenomena that manifest dialectal variation in Catalan and/or Spanish (Bonet 2008, Bonet & Mascaró 2012, Camus 2005, Fernández-Ordóñez 1999, 2009, 2011, Ordóñez 2000, 2007, RAE-ASALE 2009-2011, etc.)
- Diachronic syntactic phenomena that manifest variation in Catalan and/or Spanish (Bartra 2005a,b, 2007, Batllori & Hernanz 2009, 2011, Company Company 2007-2009, Fernández-Ordóñez 2012, etc. )
- Syntactic phenomena present in Catalan and/or Spanish, and other Romance languages (Portuguese, Italian, French, Romanian, etc.; Costa 2000, D’Alessandro et al. 2010, Dobrovie-Sorin 1994, Kayne 2000, 2005, etc.)
- The limits of syntactic variation in the present context of ‘Parameter Theory’ (Baker 2008, 2009, Biberauer 2008, Biberauer et al. 2010, Roberts & Holmberg 2010, Newmeyer 2005, and others)

Submission of Abstracts:

Abstracts should be at most two pages long (A4 paper), including examples and references, with 1 inch/2.5 cm margins on all sides and 12pt font size. The abstract should have a title but should not identify the author(s). Submissions are limited to 1 individual and 1 joint abstract per author, or 2 joint abstracts per author. Abstracts should be written in one of the languages of the workshop. Abstracts must be submitted electronically, ONLY in PDF format to the following address:

The body of the message should include the title of the abstract, the name of the author(s), his/her (their) affiliation(s) and contact details.

Languages of the workshop: Catalan, English, Spanish
Deadline for submission of abstracts: February 17, 2013
Notification of acceptance: March 31, 2013

Organizing Committee:

Ángel J. Gallego, M. Lluïsa Hernanz, Francesc Roca, Avel•lina Suñer


Baker, M. C. 1996. The Polysynthesis Parameter. New York: Oxford University Press.

Baker, M. C. 2001. The Atoms of Language. Basic Books: New York.

Baker, M. C. 2008. ‘The macroparameter in a microparametric world’. In T. Biberauer (ed.), 351-373. The Limits of Syntactic Variation. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

Baker, M. C. 2009. ‘Language universals: Abstract but not mythological’ (reply to Evans and Levinson), Behavior and Brain Science 32: 448-449.

Bartra, A. 2005a. ‘Accusative alternation in Old and Modern Romance’. In M. Batllori et al. (eds.), Parameters and Gramaticalization. New York: OUP.

Bartra, A. 2005b. ‘Aspecte i prefixació verbal en català antic’ (with J. Mateu). Caplletra 39: 85-108.

Bartra, A. 2007. ‘Determinerless noun phrases in Old Romance Passives’. In E. Stark (eds.), Nominal Determination. Typology, Context constraints and Historical emergence. Nova York: John Benjamins.

Biberauer, T. 2008. The Limits of Syntactic Variation. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

Biberauer, T., et al. (eds.) (2010). Parametric Variation: Null Subjects in Minimalist Theory. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Bonet, E. 2008. ‘The Person-Case constraint and repair strategies’. In R. d’Alessandro et al. (eds.), Person Restrictions. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.

Bonet, E. 2012. ‘Asimetrías de concordancia en el SD: el rasgo de masa en asturiano’ (with Joan Mascaró). In A. Fábregas et al. (eds.), Los límites de la morfología. Estudios ofrecidos a Soledad Varela Ortega. Madrid: Servicio de Publicaciones de la Universidad Autónoma de Madrid.

Batllori, M. and M.Ll. Hernanz. 2009. ‘En Torno a la polaridad enfática en español y en catalán: un estudio diacrónico y comparativo’. In J. Rafel (ed.). Diachronic Linguistics. Girona: Universitat de Girona.

Bosque, I. and V. Demonte (eds.). 1999. Gramática descriptiva de la lengua española (3 vols.). Madrid: Espasa.

Camus, B. 2005. ‘La quantificació: estudi comparatiu castellà-català’. Caplletra 38: 101-118.

Camus, B. 2008. ‘De adjetivos a cuantificadores: Un fragmento de la historia de los indefinidos románicos’. In O. Moreno et al. (eds.). Actas del XXXVII Simposio Internacional de la Sociedad Española de Lingüística. Pamplona: Servicio de Publicaciones de la Universidad de Navarra, pp. 87-95.

Camus, B. 2009. ‘Cuantificadores I. Los cuantificadores propios’. In C. Company Company (dir.). Sintaxis histórica de la lengua española. Parte II: La frase nominal. México: FCE, UNAM.

Cinque, G. and R. S. Kayne (eds.). 2000. The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Syntax. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Chomsky, N. 1965. Aspects of the Theory of Syntax. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Chomsky, N. 1981. Lectures on Government and Binding. Dordrecht: Foris Publications.

Company Company, C. 2007-2009. Sintaxis histórica de la lengua española. México: UNAM & Fondo de Cultura Económica.

Costa, J. 2000. Portuguese Syntax. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

D’Alessandro, R., et al. 2010. Syntactic variation. The dialects of Italy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Dobrovie-Sorin, C. 1994. The Syntax of Romanian. Berlin, Mouton de Gruyter.

Fernández-Ordóñez, I. 1999. ‘Leísmo, laísmo y loísmo’. In I. Bosque and V. Demonte (dirs.), Gramática Descriptiva de la Lengua Española. Madrid: Espasa Calpe.

Fernández-Ordóñez, I. 2009. ‘Dialect grammar of Spanish from the perspective of the Audible Corpus of Spoken Rural Spanish (or Corpus Oral y Sonoro del Español Rural, COSER)’. Dialectologia: 3 23-51.

Fernández-Ordóñez, I. 2011. ‘Discurso de ingreso en la Real Academia Española ‘La lengua de Castilla y la formación del español’ ‘. Available at

Fernández-Ordóñez, I. 2012. ‘Dialect areas and linguistic change: Pronominal paradigms in Ibero-Romance dialects from a cross-linguistic and social typology perspective’. In G. de Vogelaer and G. Seiler (eds.), The Dialect Laboratory. Dialects as a testing ground for theories of language change, Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

Kany, Ch. 1945. American-Spanish syntax. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.

Kayne, R. S. 2000. Paramenters and Universals. Oxford, NY: Oxford University Press.

Kayne, R. S. 2005. Movement and Silence. Oxford, NY: Oxford University Press.

Newmeyer, F. J. 2005. Possible and Probable Languages: A Generative Perspective on Linguistic Typology. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Ordóñez, F. 2000. The clausal structure of Spanish: a comparative perspective. New York: Garland.

Ordóñez, F. 2007. ‘Cartography of postverbal subjects in Spanish and Catalan’. In Romance languages and linguistic theory 2005: Selected papers from ‘Going Romance’, Utrecht, 8-10 December 2005. S. Baauw et al. (eds.), 259-280. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

RAE – ASALE. 2009, 2011. Nueva Gramática de la Lengua Española (3 vols.). Madrid: Espasa.

Roberts, I. and A. Holmberg. 2010. ‘Introduction’. In T. Biberauer et al. (eds.), Parametric Variation: Null Subjects in Minimalist Theory. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Solà, J. et al. 2002. Gramàtica del Català Contemporani (3 vols.). Barcelona: Empúries.

Veny, J. 1978. Els parlars catalans (Síntesi de dialectologia). Palma de Mallorca: Moll.

Page Updated: 03-Dec-2012