LINGUIST List 26.2479

Wed May 13 2015

Confs: Cog Science, History of Ling, Ling Theories, Semantics, Syntax/Greece

Editor for this issue: Erin Arnold <>

Date: 12-May-2015
From: Terje Lohndal <>
Subject: Generative Syntax in the Twenty-First Century: The Road AheadGenerative Syntax in the Twenty-First Century: The Road Ahead
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Generative Syntax in the Twenty-First Century: The Road Ahead

Date: 28-May-2015 - 30-May-2015
Location: Athens, Greece
Contact: Terje Lohndal
Contact Email: < click here to access email >

Linguistic Field(s): Cognitive Science; History of Linguistics; Linguistic Theories; Semantics; Syntax

Meeting Description:

Generative grammar has made important contributions to our understanding of language, and with it, the human mind. The field continues to be fecund and vibrant and new discoveries and developments continue apace. However, the rapid growth and development of this still-young field leaves it without a clear and uncontroversial canon, especially in syntax. There are few fundamental points that practitioners of the so-called minimalist approach have a clear consensus on. Because minimalist syntacticians generally cannot rely on a shared core of hypotheses and central principles, each paper has to build its case from the ground up, which results in publications steadily growing in size and presentations at conferences rarely generating the kind of excitement and fruitful discussion today that they used to more than a decade ago. It has become increasingly difficult to prove individual analyses, to prove them wrong, or to confront them in a meaningful way with counterarguments or supporting evidence.

This conference represents a ‘reconstitutional’ meeting of major minds in generative syntax aimed at producing a white paper to (re)affirm the theoretical core, work towards creating an analytical lingua franca, and lay down a platform for research in the field in the coming years.

In addition to plenary and group discussions, there will be a poster session, in which young and early-career-stage researchers will be encouraged to participate. A formal call for papers for this session will be distributed via Linguist List in due time.

Invited Contributors:

Elena Anagnostopoulou
Mark Baker
Jonathan Bobaljik
Lisa Cheng
Rose-Marie Déchaine
Janet Dean Fodor
Sabine Iatridou
Julie Anne Legate
Joan Maling
Alec Marantz
Jim McCloskey
Gereon Müller
David Pesetsky
Maria Polinsky
Gillian Ramchand
Henk van Riemsdijk
Luigi Rizzi
Ian Roberts
Peter Sells
Ivy Sichel
Spyridoula Varlokosta


Artemis Alexiadou, Marcel den Dikken, Winfried Lechner, Terje Lohndal and Peter Svenonius


Each of the sessions will start with brief statements presented by invited participants. These are included in parenthesis in the program. After the brief presentations, there will be discussion.

All invited participants have submitted written statements. These can be accessed via the conference website:

Attendees should register via the registration form on the website by Monday May 18.

Thursday, May 28

Central Research Areas in Generative Syntax

1A Moderator: Marcel den Dikken
Jason Merchant, Ian Roberts, Ivy Sichel

1B Moderator: Winfried Lechner
Derivations and Representations
Rose-Marie Déchaine, Gereon Müller, Peter Sells

12:30‒14:30 Lunch

Theory and Description in Generative Syntax

2A Moderators: Terje Lohndal & Peter Svenonius
To What Extent Should High-Level Theoretical Considerations like SMT and Darwin's Problem Drive Research Programs?
Norbert Hornstein, Henk van Riemsdijk, Ian Roberts, Peter Sells

2B Moderator: Artemis Alexiadou
Generative Typology, Opportunities and Challenges: What Is Realistic, What Is Urgent, How Should We Proceed?
Mark Baker, Jonathan Bobaljik, Rose-Marie Déchaine

Poster Session I
Biggs, Graf, Kotek, Motut, Shormani, Struckmeier

Friday, May 29

3 Generative Syntax and Its Internal Interfaces

3A Moderator: Marcel den Dikken
Syntax and Its Relation to Morphology and Phonology
Elena Anagnostopoulou, Lisa Lai-Shen Cheng, Henk van Riemsdijk

3B Moderator: Winfried Lechner
Syntax and Its Relation to Semantics and Pragmatics
Jason Merchant, Maria Polinsky, Gillian Ramchand

12:30‒14:30 Lunch

4 Generative Syntax and Its External Interfaces

4A Moderator: Artemis Alexiadou
The Relationship between Generative Syntax and Experimental Linguistics
Janet Dean Fodor, Luigi Rizzi, Joan Maling, Spyridoula Varlokosta

4B Moderators: Terje Lohndal & Peter Svenonius
Generative Syntax within Linguistics, (Cognitive) Science, Academia, and Society
Julie Anne Legate, Gereon Müller, David Pesetsky, Maria Polinsky

Poster Session II
Deal, Kalin, McKinney-Bock, Muñoz-Perez, Sibaldo, Vlachos

Saturday, May 30

Reports from the Moderators on the Symposia

Discussion of the Most Debated Topics

12:30–14:30 Lunch

Plenary Discussion of the Road Ahead 1: Within Generative Syntax

Plenary Discussion of the Road Ahead II: Outside Generative Syntax

Conference Party at Giantes (See map on website)

Page Updated: 13-May-2015