LINGUIST List 26.1081

Wed Feb 25 2015

Calls: History of Ling, Lang Acquisition, Semantics, Syntax, Text/Corpus Ling/Belgium

Editor for this issue: Anna White <>

Date: 23-Feb-2015
From: Koen Roelandt <>
Subject: BCGL 8: The Grammar of Idioms
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Full Title: BCGL 8: The Grammar of Idioms
Short Title: BCGL 8

Date: 04-Jun-2015 - 05-Jun-2015
Location: Brussels, Belgium
Contact Person: Jeroen van Craenenbroeck
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >
Web Site:

Linguistic Field(s): History of Linguistics; Language Acquisition; Semantics; Syntax; Text/Corpus Linguistics

Call Deadline: 15-Mar-2015

Meeting Description:

According to the Fregean principle of compositionality, the meaning of a complex expression is determined by the meanings of its parts and the rules used to combine them. This principle is flouted in the case of idioms (cf. Katz & Postal 1963; Fraser 1970; Katz 1973; Chomsky 1980; Machonis 1985; Schenk 1994; Grégoire 2009; among others). Every language contains idiomatic expressions which, by definition, denote a meaning that is not simply derivable from (the combination of) the meanings of the individual lexical items of that expression. A canonical example is kick the bucket, the meaning of which has nothing to do with either kicking or buckets; it simply means 'to die'. The existence of such expressions within natural language gives rise to many questions which have puzzled linguists for years, such as how these phrases are formed syntactically, whether they are restricted to certain structural domains, or how it is that we are able to deduce the idiomatic interpretation of such phrases despite there being no clues as to their meanings within any of the individual lexical items that comprise these expressions.

The purpose of this workshop is to discuss and explore the phenomenon of idioms with the aim of gaining better theoretical and empirical insights into how such expressions are able to occur within natural language, and what sorts of rules of language they are governed by.

Invited Speakers:

- Christiane D. Fellbaum (Princeton)
- Louise McNally (Universitat Pompeu Fabra)
- Manfred Sailer (Goethe-Universität Frankfurt am Main)

2nd Call for Papers:

Abstracts should not exceed two pages, including data, references and diagrams. Abstracts should be typed in at least 11-point font, with one-inch margins (letter-size; 8½ inch by 11 inch or A4) and a maximum of 50 lines of text per page. Abstracts must be anonymous and submissions are limited to 2 per author, at least one of which is co-authored. Only electronic submissions will be accepted. Please submit your abstract using the EasyChair link for BCGL8:

Page Updated: 25-Feb-2015