LINGUIST List 28.746

Tue Feb 07 2017

Calls: Finnic, East Slavic, Baltic, Gen Ling/Estonia

Editor for this issue: Kenneth Steimel <>

Date: 06-Feb-2017
From: Ilja Seržant <>
Subject: Grammar of Non-Standard Varieties in the East of the Circum-Baltic Area
E-mail this message to a friend

Full Title: Grammar of Non-Standard Varieties in the East of the Circum-Baltic Area

Date: 01-Feb-2018 - 03-Feb-2018
Location: Tartu, Estonia
Contact Person: Liina Lindström
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >
Web Site:

Linguistic Field(s): General Linguistics

Language Family(ies): Baltic; East Slavic; Finnic

Call Deadline: 30-Sep-2017

Meeting Description:

The conference will offer a forum for scholars interested in grammatical phenomena from understudied varieties of the Circum-Baltic area and potentially foster comparative research on border varieties across genetic boundaries in the area.

While most of the dialect studies rely on questionnaires of various kinds, it is only recently that usage-based methods have started to be applied in dialectology such as corpus-based studies on dialect syntax (cf. Szmrecsanyi & Kortmann 2009; Szmrecsanyi 2013). While not without limitations and disadvantages, corpus-based methods can hardly be overestimated in the dialectological research. Variationist linguists have become interested in dialectal grammars and the ways they interact with each other as well as with standard varieties.

The effect of these new and positive developments have been felt less for the East of the Circum-Baltic area in general. This is despite the creation of a few important corpora, such as: the morphologically annotated corpus of Estonian dialects (; the TriMCo dialectal corpus ( that will contain annotated dialect records from non-standard Latgalian, East Lithuanian, Belarusian and Russian Pskov varieties; corpus of Finnish dialects ( The overall picture is not substantially changed by the few studies from different theoretical perspectives on the grammar of Estonian dialects (Uiboaed et al. 2013; Klavan, Pilvik & Uiboaed 2015; Lindström et al., to appear), or West and North Russian (Tommola 1996; Trubinskij 1972, 1988; Požarickaja 1996; Lavine 2014; Post 2014 or Seržant 2012, 2014).

The first aim of this conference is therefore to gather researchers working on various domains of grammar of non-standard varieties of the area such as morphosyntax, syntax, semantics and function of grammatical categories.

Furthermore, the regional varieties are also more suitable for research on language contact. Though many borrowings may not only be banned from the standard, sometimes they simply do not reach the standard and persist only as regional traits in the close vicinity of the source language. Moreover, non-standard varieties are much more flexible as regards the accommodation of borrowed patterns and items. They therefore provide more natural example cases of these processes and better lend themselves to the study of mechanisms constraining pattern borrowing. It seems, therefore, that investigating language contact on the basis of non-standard varieties, especially if they are also situated close to the respective genetic borders should be more promising and lucid. The second goal of this conference is thus to approach language contact from the perspective of the regional varieties.

Invited Speakers:

Benedikt Szmrecsanyi (Leuven)
Axel Holvoet (Warsaw)
Björn Wiemer (Mainz)
Nicole Nau (Poznan)
Ruprecht von Waldenfels (Zürich), Nina Dobrushina (Moscow), Michael Daniel (Moscow)
Maria Vilkuna (Helsinki)
Riho Grünthal (Helsinki)
Fedor Rozhanskiy (Tartu/Moscow), Elena Markus (Tartu/Moscow)
Petar Kehayov (Regensburg)

Call for Papers:

We envisage submission on topics including but not limited to the following:

- The description of a particular grammatical phenomenon in a non-standard variety from the area; corpus-driven accounts are particularly welcome
- Comparative studies on non-standard varieties of genetically different languages
- Studies providing evidence for language contact on the basis of non-standard varieties
- Contact-induced variation and change
- The contribution of the varieties to linguistic theory, typology, etc.
- The description of accommodation and propagation mechanisms of a borrowed pattern in non-standard varieties.

Please submit your abstract via email to all organizers:

Liina Lindström (Tartu, liina.lindstrom[at]
Ilja A. Seržant (Leipzig, ilja.serzants[at]
Maarja-Liisa Pilvik (Tartu, maarja-liisa.pilvik[at]

Page Updated: 07-Feb-2017