16 September 2012

Fernanda Mendes presents at the Acquisition Lab/LARC tomorrow

The Acquisition lab/ LARC meeting on Monday, September 17 at noon in Herter 301.

Fernanda Mendes visiting from Brazil until December will present "Inalienable possession: differences between body-parts names and relationship names in English and Brazilian Portuguese"

Everyone's welcome!

Undergraduate Linguistics Club starts up

Jeremy Cahill writes:

Linguistics Club is back for the fall semester! We will once again be   hosting a number of events throughout the semester, including a talk  series featuring UMass linguistics professors and other language researchers.

We invite you to come join us for our first event of the semester:  Game Night, featuring Phonetic and Standard Scrabble, Bananagrams,  Boggle, and more. Pizza will be provided.

What:  Game Night
Where: 301 South College (next to Du Bois Library)
When:  Wednesday 9/19 at 5:30 PM
RSVP:  jccahill@student.umass.edu

To receive messages about future Linguistics Club events, subscribe to  
our mailing list here:


(A number of you visited our table at the Activities Expo and gave us  your email. If you did, don't worry about subscribing -- we've got you covered.)

To look at an events calendar and find out about a host of other activities going on in the department, go here:


Need directions? Other questions? Suggestions? Email me at  

Lisa Selkirk presents

Lisa Selkirk was an invited speaker at the the Tone and Intonation conference at the University of Oxford on September 6-8.  Her talk, "Prosodic Headedness and Prosodic Typology" was the closing presentation of the conference at Balliol College. For more information, see


She reprised this presentation at the Prosody Proseminar last Tuesday, September 11.

Elizabeth Bogal-Allbritten in Natural Language Semantics

Elizabeth Bogal-Allbritten's paper "Decomposing Notions of Adjectival Transitivity in Navajo" has been accepted for publication in Natural Language Semantics.

Congratulations Elizabeth!

Bhatt at NYU

Rajesh Bhatt will be giving the colloquium at New York University this Friday, September 21. His talk will be on Differential Comparatives.

PsychoSyntax gets organized

The PsychoSyntax group meets every other Wednesday in 206 Tobin Hall at 10:45 AM.  The PsychoSyntacticians have organized the following schedule of presentations for their meetings.

9/19: Josh Levy, Semantics of "however"
10/10: Kristine Yu, Samoan morphosyntax
10/24: Jon Ander Mendia, Basque quantifiers
11/7: Magda Oiry, Experimental investigation of French clefting
12/5: Shayne Sloggett, Processing of German case

All are welcome!

If you have something you'd like to discuss, or present, at the PsychoSyntax meetings, get in touch with Brian Dillon.

S Reading Group fires up

Anisa Schardl writes:

It's the fall, and that means that SRG is starting up again!  SRG, formerly known as the syntax/semantics reading group(s), is a group that meets about every two weeks on Thursday evenings over dinner and drinks.  Usually, someone presents on whatever they're currently working on.  This is a way for the s-siders in the department to keep up to date with each other's work.  It's also a great place to give practice talks!

I would like to claim the first slot of the semester to give a practice talk.  It's on work this Elizabeth and I did this summer, and it's semantically inclined.  I also happen to be busy on the appropriate Thursday, so I'm moving that weeks' SRG to Wednesday evening, September 19th.

After that, we have no one signed up!  So, I would like to invite s-siders to volunteer to give practice talks or just talk about what they've been working on.  Other than practice talks, we like to keep these presentations as informal as possible, so don't worry if it's not polished!  Email me if you'd like to present!  Here are some open dates:

October 4th
October 18th
November 1st
November 15th
November 29th

Finally, the SRG calendar can be found here:


If you need help importing it into iCal or something, just let me know.

The S Reading Group meets on Wednesday

Anisa Schardl writes:

We'll be having the first meeting of SRG this Wednesday (not Thursday) at Elizabeth's house, starting around 6:30pm.  I'll be giving a practice talk about work that Elizabeth and I have been doing together on Tshangla.  It will be semantically/pragmatically oriented.

Since it is dinner time, we will be ordering pizza.  As SRG has no budget, please bring money to pay for pizza, or bring your own dinner if you don't want pizza.  It would be nice if a couple people brought drinks too.

Elizabeth's house is a large blue Victorian-style house with a porch located at 50 Philips Pl in Northampton.  Her apartment is number 1L.  It would be easiest for people to enter through the back door to the apartment, since the front entryway is locked. To do this, walk down the driveway (on the left side of the house), turn the corner and go in the door that you come to back there (next to the large trashcans).  If you get lost, please call Elizabeth at (270) 293-9489.  See you there!

UMass at South Asian Languages Theory at Yale

Yale University is hosting "South Asian Languages: Theory, Typology, and Diachrony" September 28-30. Our own Rajesh Bhatt is one of the invited speakers, he'll present a paper entitled "many and more." In addition, Elizabeth Bogal-Allbritten and Anisa Schardl will present their paper "Tshangla conjectural questions."

For more information, see


Undergraduate Research Positions in the Phonetics Lab

John Kingston writes:

If you're interested in getting research experience in phonetics,  particularly in techniques for studying how people recognize and  distinguish speech sounds, please contact me to set up an appointment to discuss what you might do.

Rajesh Bhatt on the road

Rajesh Bhatt's summer was filled with linguistics. A small sampling of his activities would include these talks, presentations and classes:

May 28-30: "Causativization in the Hindi-Urdu Treebank" at Konstanz

June 4: "Differential Comparatives" talks at Stuttgart and Tübingen

July 2-4: Commentary on papers by Grosu (Internally Headed Relative Clauses), Heycock (Reconstruction in Relative Clauses), and Rouveret (Resumption in Welsh Relative Clauses) with Sabine Iatridou at the University of Jerusalem, Israel.

July 5: "Complex Predicates and Agreement in Hindi-Urdu," International Conference on South Asian Languages, Moscow State University, Russia.

July 10-28: Intro to Syntax, taught at the Suny Stony Brook New York Institute in Saint Petersburg, St. Petersburg State University.

August 1-5: Work on Dependency Grammars and Parsing, with Shravan Vasisth and Samar Hussain at Potsdam University.

Chomsky gives talks at UMass

Noam Chomsky will be giving a talk at the People Before Profits fundraising dinner hosted by the Center for Popular Economics. The event is on September 27 at 5:30 in the Amherst Room (10th Floor) of the Campus Center. 

For more information, go to:


To purchase tickets, go to:


Chomsky will also be giving a free public lecture "Who Owns the World? Resistance and Pathways Forward" in the UMass Fine Arts Center at 8:00PM on September 27. Reserve your tickets by contacting the Fine Arts Center box office at 545-2511. Only two tickets per person. 

GLSA online store refreshed

Elizabeth Bogal-Allbritten writes:

The GLSA online store has been updated to include many new GLSA publications, including NELS 39 (Vol 1 and 2), UMOP 38 (Processing Linguistic Structure), SULA 5 and SULA 6, and dissertations by Schwarz, Alonso-Ovalle, and Juarros-Daussà. 
If you would like more information on publishing a UMass dissertation through the GLSA, please contact Elizabeth Bogal-Allbritten (eba@linguist.umass.edu).

The McCarthy-Pater grant group meets on Friday

Joe Pater writes:

The McCarthy-Pater grant group will meet Friday Sept. 21st at 11 in the Partee room to plan for their next NSF grant submission. All are welcome. If you plan to come, and haven't received the reading materials for the meeting, please contact me and I'll send them.