LINGUIST List 26.3089

Tue Jun 30 2015

Calls: General Linguistics, Neurolinguistics, Pragmatics, Semantics, Syntax/Germany

Editor for this issue: Erin Arnold <>

Date: 30-Jun-2015
From: Markus Philipp <>
Subject: Agentivity and Event Structure: Theoretical and Experimental Approaches
E-mail this message to a friend

Full Title: Agentivity and Event Structure: Theoretical and Experimental Approaches

Date: 24-Feb-2016 - 26-Feb-2016
Location: Konstanz, Germany
Contact Person: Markus Philipp
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >

Linguistic Field(s): General Linguistics; Neurolinguistics; Pragmatics; Semantics; Syntax

Call Deadline: 30-Aug-2015

Meeting Description:

This DGfS-AG aims to bring together theoretical and experimental accounts of different concepts of agentivity and their influence on event interpretation. Events are usually identified by their spatio-temporal properties. However, the way participants are engaged in an event also plays a major role (e.g. Eckardt 2002). While the impact of the semantic property of an incremental theme (or patient) on event interpretation has been widely discussed (following e.g. Krifka 1998), the influence of the (possibly contextually driven) semantic properties of the agent or causer role on event interpretation is still understudied, particularly from an experimental perspective. We also have a poor understanding of the impact of different agentivity features (or entailments, e.g Dowty 1991) on event interpretation. Additionally, a related open question is to what extent event interpretation is semantically determined and/or pragmatically driven.

A primary focus lies on accounts that try to integrate experimental data and theoretical considerations with respect to agentivity in event interpretation. The AG will serve as a discussion forum for researchers from different fields such as theoretical syntax and semantics, psycho- and neurolinguistics at the syntax-semantics interface and experimental pragmatics.


Eckardt, Regine. 2002. Event semantics. In: Fritz Hamm & T. Ede Zimmermann (eds.). Semantics. Linguistische Berichte, Special Issue 10, 91-128.
Dowty, David R. 1991. Thematic proto-roles and argument selection. Language 67, 547-619.
Krifka, Manfred. 1998. The origins of telicity. In: Susan Rothstein (ed.). Events and grammar. Dordrecht: Kluwer, 197–235.

Call for Papers:

Presentations on the following and related topics may contribute towards a clarification of the relationship between agentivity and event structure:

- Features of agentivity (volitionality, causation, etc.) in event interpretation
- Agentivity and point-of-view aspect
- Agentivity and non-culminating events
- Agent-oriented adverbial modification
- Agentivity and event interpretation in nominalizations

We ask for abstracts for 30-minute talks (20 min presentation + 10 min discussion). Abstracts should not exceed one page (12pt, 1.5 spacing). Please refer to the “Generic Style Rules for Linguistics” and the “Leipzig Glossing Rules”:

The workshop language is English, presentations to be held in English. Please send your abstract to:

Page Updated: 30-Jun-2015