• Frequency and acoustic reduction in English -ment derivatives

      Sung, Jae-Hyun; University of Arizona (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2013)
      This study investigates the influence of frequency on the production of bimorphemic words, and considers which frequency measure is most apt to explain the differences. Previous studies have reported that frequent words are produced faster and more casually than infrequent ones, and that medial segments will have shorter durations. The present study examines the relation between frequency and the duration of medial segments in English derived words by conducting a production experiment with 6 native speakers of American English using 74 English '-ment' derivatives, and pits word frequency, base frequency, and relative frequency (wordfreq/basefreq) against one another as predictors. The results show that models incorporating any of the three frequency measures strongly predict medial segment duration (R-squared = 0.56, with the differences in R-squared between them on the order of 1%. Among the three frequency measures, whole word frequency explained the most variance, across all consonant types. The duration of segments in highly frequent words tends to be shorter than that in relatively infrequent words. Overall, this study confirms that speakers are sensitive to the extralinguistic information associated with the words such as frequency, and in this case, traditional frequency measures (whole word and base frequencies) are better predictors than relative frequency.
    • Front Matter, Table of Contents, and Introduction (Coyote Papers Volume 12, 2001)

      University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2001
    • Front Matter, Table of Contents, and Introduction (Coyote Papers Volume 13, 2004)

      University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2004
    • Fronting and Palatalization in Two Dialects of Shoshoni

      Elzinga, Dirk; The University of Arizona (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2000)
    • The gender congruency effect in bare noun production in Spanish

      O'Rourke, Polly; University of Arizona (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2007)
      Previous research in syntactic gender congruency effects has indicated that German and Dutch speakers exhibited priming effects in the production of noun phrases (La Heij, Mak, Sander & Willeboordse 1998; Schriefers 1993; Schriefers & Teruel 2000), whereas speakers of Spanish and Italian showed no such effects (Miozzo & Caramazza 1999; Costa, Sebastián-Gallés, Miozzo & Caramazza 1999). Until recently, the production of bare nouns had only been examined in Dutch (La Heij, et al. 1998) and no effect was found. It was concluded that gender information is only accessed when specifically required for the selection of agreement morphemes. Cubelli, Lotto, Paolieri, Girelli, and Job (2005), however, found an inhibitory gender congruency effect for bare noun production in Italian. The goal of the current experiment was to determine if such an effect could be elicited in Spanish. The current experiment examined the production of bare nouns and noun phrases (NPs) by native Spanish speakers within the picture-word interference paradigm, in which subjects named a picture accompanied by a distractor word which was either gender congruent or incongruent with the target. Congruency effects were determined by naming latencies. An analysis of the data showed that there was no gender congruency effect in bare noun production. Naming latencies in the two conditions were virtually identical (f (1,15) = 0.017, p < 0.90). In addition, separate analyses were performed on target words of each gender (masculine and feminine) and no gender specific effect was found. As predicted, there were no congruency effects for NP production. The fact that, in bare noun production, Spanish behaves like Dutch rather than Italian indicates that there is a critical difference between Spanish and Italian relating to gender access.
    • Gender variation in writing: Analyzing online dating ads

      Schultz, Patrick; University of Texas at Austin (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2013)
      In the present study, a corpus of more than 18,000 online dating ads (downloaded from Craigslist.com, ~ 1.4 million words) is used to investigate differences in language use between men and women in the online dating context. Few studies have investigated gender differences in written texts, Newman, Groom et al. (2008), Mulac and Lundell (1994) and Koppel, Argamon et al. (2002) being the notable exceptions. These papers, however, differ remarkably in methodology and results. In the dataset studied here, regression analysis reveals marked differences the use of linguistic features such as emoticons or abbreviations. Writer gender and addressee gender emerge as predictors of variation.
    • A General Theory of Bare "Singular" Kind Terms

      Nomoto, Hiroki; Tokyo University of Foreign Studies (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2012)
      Dayal's (2004) theory of kind terms accounts for the definiteness and number marking patterns in kind terms in many languages. Brazilian Portuguese has been claimed to be a counter-example to her theory as it seems to allow bare “singular” kind terms, which are predicted to be impossible according to her theory. However, the empirical status of the relevant data has not been clear so far. This paper presents a new data point from Singlish and confirms the existence of bare “singular” kind terms. A revised theory of kind terms is proposed that accounts for it. The proposed theory puts forth a number system with three basic categories, i.e. singular, plural and general. It is claimed that bare “singular” kind terms are in fact derived from general NPs, which are associated with number-neutral properties. The paper also discusses why bare “singular” kind terms are not perfectly acceptable in Brazilian Portuguese.
    • A German expletive gone unnoticed? Some notes on (obligatorily) left-peripheral so

      Catasso, Nicholas; Bergische Universität Wuppertal (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2021)
    • Good Times, Bad Times: A keyword analysis of letters to shareholders of two Fortune 500 Banking Institutions

      Poole, Robert E.; University of Arizona (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2013)
      This corpus-based keyword analysis study investigated the letters to the shareholders from two commercial banks, Bank of America and Citigroup, over a three-year period from 2008, 2009, and 2010. The letters were compiled to facilitate a diachronic assessment of profit/loss reporting from two prominent institutions over a time period in which the recession commenced, peaked, and concluded. To conduct the analysis on the node texts, two sets of reference corpora were compiled. The first reference corpus set consisted of the letters to shareholders from eight consistently high-performing corporations not within the commercial banking industry for each of the three years; the second reference corpus set consisted of the letters from the 10 banking institutions that also appeared in the Fortune 500 listings for the three period. The corpus-based analysis revealed that in years of low performance companies create messages that assert a vision and forward a strategy for ensuring future success while also deflecting responsibility for past failure. In contrast, when companies perform well, the keyword lists display a clear tendency of the company and the author to accept praise and responsibility for high performance.
    • Gradient Sonority and Harmonic Foot Repair in English Syncope

      Pérez, Patricia E. (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 1992)
      The interaction between the syllabification and the footing of a word is a very interdependent one. It has generally been thought that syllables are built from segments and feet are built from syllables. So, the foot structure of a word is dependent on its syllable structure. In turn, since stress is assigned through feet, syllables not only affect a word's feet-they affect it's stress pattern. What would happen, then, if a word was syllabified incorrectly? Undoubtedly, this could alter the representation of the word's footing. Stress assignment would then be affected resulting in a possibly ungrammatical representation of the word. Any theory that describes the syllabification and footing processes of a language must make sure that ungrammatical representations are not generated. In this paper, I will describe the syncopation process in English in terms of syllabification and footing. Here, 'syncopated' refers to words that have had a medial vowel deleted (postlexically) from them resulting in shorter words.1 I will only consider words in which the vowel is deleted in casual speech (from careful speech forms) as opposed to words whose vowels are deleted as a result of morphological affixation. For example, the word "separate" is [sEpərət] in careful speech, but [sEprət] in casual and fast speech. In the first part of the paper, I will show that syllabification of these forms follows a rule that is similar, but not equal, to the rule that applies to unsyncopated forms. This rule focuses on the consonant clusters that are created by the medial vowel deletion. While governed by some version of the sonority hierarchy, the consonants that can make up the syncopated clusters can combine more freely than their underlying counterparts. However, as a result of this syllabification process, the footing of these words is altered. I begin this discussion by laying out the syncope facts of English and focusing on their stress and segmental environments (sections 2.1-2.2). Then, I will describe the sonority relationships between the medial consonants (sections 3.1-3.3). I will then present my first claim - that syllabification as a result of derivation,2 applies differently than that of syllabification on underived forms (section 3.4). The second half of this paper deals with the footing of the syncopated words. According to Prince's (1990) theory of Rhythmic Harmony, the feet created by syncopation are much "worse" than the feet of the careful speech forms of the words. This judgement is based on his idea that there are "Optimal" forms of certain linguistic structures, such as syllables and feet. He also claims that languages will "repair" these structures in order to preserve or strive for the Optimal forms. Here, I will show that syncopated forms of English do, in fact, repair their syllable structures in order to maintain more stable foot structures. As a result of this, the stress patterns of the words are preserved. I will begin this part of the discussion with a review of foot structure and Prince's theory (sections 4. -4.2) Then, I will show that the syncopated forms syllabically repair themselves to create the "best" forms of feet possible (section 4.3).
    • Grammatical Relations, Lexical Rules, and Japanese Syntax

      Marantz, Alec; Massachusetts Institute of Technology (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 1981)
    • Hixkaryana: The Syntax of Object Verb Subject Word Order

      Kalin, Laura; University of California, Los Angeles (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2012)
      In this paper I propose and motivate a syntactic analysis of Hixkaryana (a Carib language spoken in the Amazon in Brazil), drawing on the extensive, linguistically-informed fieldwork of Desmond C. Derbyshire (1979, 1985, inter alia). Hixkaryana displays basic/unmarked Object Verb Subject (OVS) word order, which is found in very few languages of the world (Dryer 2008). There are three main components to the proposal presented here. I argue that the syntax of Hixkaryana involves (i) a marked hierarchy of agreement projections, AgrO over AgrS; (ii) movement of the subject to a high topic position; and (iii) fronting of the rest of the clause over the subject. This analysis accounts for a constellation of properties in Hixkaryana, including the surface order of constituents (OVSX, where X is an adjunct PP or AP), surface constituency (the object and verb form a constituent exclusive of the subject), verbal morphology (agreement is a prefix while all other inflectional affixes are suffixes), structural relations (the subject c-commands the object and obliques/adjuncts), the position of particles (which are either in second position or invariantly post-verbal), and exceptional OSV word order (triggered by the first person exclusive pronoun amna). OVS languages, like Hixkaryana, are important for syntactic theory because they likely have special insights to contribute, given how rare they are; however, OVS languages receive very little attention in the literature. This paper aims to call attention to OVS word order as a real linguistic phenomenon that must be accounted for in mainstream linguistic theory.
    • Identity investment in the pedagogy of identity texts: A critical review

      Hiba B., Ibrahim; York University (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2021)
    • Idiomatic Root Merge in Modern Hebrew blends

      Pham, Mike; University of Chicago (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2011)
      In this paper I use the Distributional Morphology framework and semantic Locality Constraints proposed by Arad (2003) to look at category assignments of blends in Modern Hebrew, as well as blends, compounds and idioms in English where relevant. Bat-El (1996) provides an explicit phonological analysis of Modern Hebrew blends, and argues against any morphological process at play in blend formation. I argue, however, that blends and compounds must be accounted for within morphology due to category assignments. I first demonstrate that blends are unquestionably formed by blending fully inflected words rather than roots, and then subsequently reject an analysis that accounts for weakened Locality Constraints by proposing the formation of a new root. Instead, I propose a hypothesis of Idiomatic Root Merge where a root can be an n-place predicate that selects at least an XP sister and a category head. This proposal also entails that there is a structural difference between two surface-similar phrases that have respectively literal and idiomatic meanings.
    • Immediate-local MERGE as pair-Merge

      Omune, Jun; Kansai Gaidai University (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2020)
      One of the structure-building operations—pair-Merge/adjunction—is conceptually implied to be dispensable in the minimalist MERGE model. This article proposes that immediate-local MERGE (IL-MERGE)—extremely local application of internal MERGE—yields the asymmetric property of adjunction. IL-MERGE forms {a, {a, b}} that is equivalent of <a, b> built by pair-Merge.
    • Implicatures in Agreement

      Ivlieva, Natalia; Massachusetts Institute of Technology (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2012)
      The paper accounts for a puzzling agreement behavior of disjunctions, namely the fact that in certain environments plural agreement with a subject-disjunction is possible, even though both disjuncts are singular. I argue that such behavior is driven by the theory of implicatures. In particular, I argue that disjunction is a predicate and it can have plural feature, which closes the predicate under sum formation; second, this plural feature triggers a multiplicity implicature along the lines of Zweig 2009. When this implicature is in conflict with an exclusivity implicature generated by the scalar item or, the plural feature is blocked, hence no possibility of plural agreement. In environments where such conflict does not arise, plural agreement is possible.
    • Indefiniteness in Temoaya Otomi

      De la Cruz-Sánchez, Gabriela; The University of Arizona (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle, 2022)
      This paper discusses indefiniteness in Temoaya Otomi (ISO 639-3 ott). The examples are the result of elicitation, grammaticality judgment and narratives provided by two Temoaya Otomi-Spanish speakers. After the analysis, I conclude that Temoaya Otomi indefiniteness is marked with indefinite articles, numerals, or bare nouns.
    • Inflectional affixes & clitics in Kaska (Northern Athabaskan)

      O'Donnell, Meghan; University of Arizona (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2004)
      This paper argues for a specific hierarchical syntactic structure for Kaska, a Northern Athabaskan language spoken in the southern Yukon Territory and northeastern British Columbia. The arguments herein are grounded in Minimalist Syntax (Chomsky 1995; Collins 1997) and Distributed Morphology (Halle & Marantz 1994; Harley & Noyer 1999). Traditionally, Athabaskan morphology has exemplified templatic morphology, which by definition, has no meaningful correspondence between the underlying, morpho-syntactic hierarchy and the surface, morpho-phonological linear form. Using the derivation of transitive sentences, this paper shows that, in Kaska, there is a direct, meaningful correspondence between the hierarchical syntactic structure and the linear order of morphemes within the verb complex at spell-out.
    • Intonational meaning: why Mom can be both emotional and rational

      Good, Erin; University of Arizona (University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2005)
      This paper seeks to evaluate and quantify the acoustic cues utilized in the production and perception of intonational meanings in English. Although much previous work has started from observed contours and looked for their meaning based on the context where they were found (Ward and Hirschberg 1985, Gussenhoven 1984, Crystal 1969), the opposite approach is taken here. Arbitrary contours generated in a systematic way (detailed below) were presented to study participants, who were then asked to rate these items on a series of semantic scales (scales with antonyms on either end). The items were word-contour pairs consisting of one of four words in combination with one of twenty-seven contours. Contours were created on a grid which had three time points and three pitch levels. The words were chosen to have a variety of types of semantic/dictionary meanings. Participants’ ratings were used to determine the emotive meaning of the contours, and thus the degree to which the contours interrelate. As defined by Osgood (1957), the emotive meaning of an utterance or word does not relate directly to its dictionary meaning, but instead relates to the location of that utterance or word in the semantic space. By looking at what items cluster together in semantic space and comparing the acoustic and lexical/semantic characteristics of these items it is possible to understand which dimensions play a role in the assignment of meaning to intonational contours. Results show that the judgments on the semantic scales are influenced by both the intonational contours and the lexical items. Multivariate Analysis of Variance tests were performed to determine what acoustic characteristics contributed the most to the formation of clusters of items. It was found that the presence versus absence of High pitch points in the contour as well as the word used to convey the contour were the most influential factors for the participants. The approach taken here is able to uncover new shades of intonational meaning, as well as pinpoint the acoustic cues used to assess these meanings.
    • Introduction (Coyote Papers 11, 2000)

      University of Arizona Linguistics Circle (Tucson, Arizona), 2000