Linguistics: Sociotopography

  Sociotopography: Language, landscape and culture in spatial cognition A/Prof Bill Palmer, University of Newcastle Cross-cultural diversity in linguistic and non-linguistic spatial behaviour is well known (Levinson 2003, Levinson & Wilkins 2006). Much research treats languages as unitary data points (Majid et al 2004). However, a handful of studies have found that individuals within language …

Linguistics: Reading and writing in multiliterate speakers along the Silk Road

Linguistics: Reading and writing in multiliterate speakers along the Silk Road Prof Brendan Weekes, University of Hong Kong   The UN General Assembly has declared 2019 as the Year of Indigenous Languages. According to UNESCO, at least 2500+ spoken languages are currently vulnerable or extinct. A mere ten (Chinese, English, Spanish, Arabic, Hindi, Portuguese, Bengali, …

Linguistics: Language diversification through the lens of rapid intergenerational change

Language diversification through the lens of rapid intergenerational change A/Prof Felicity Meakins University of Queensland Abstract Most cases of language creation occur as languages split and diverge from other languages in processes which are conceptualised in linguistic phylogenies. More rarely, some languages emerge abruptly over the course of one or two generations in language communities …

Linguistics: Does language hit the beat?

Does language hit the beat? Studying linguistic rhythm by means of sensorimotor synchronisation Dr Tamara Rathcke, University of Kent Abstract For decades, the concept of rhythm in language has been controversially debated (Roach 1982, Cummins 2012). There is a great deal of disagreement on the unit, the definition, the study method and the sheer existence …

Indigenous Languages of the Himalayas

The Thousand Tongues in the Heart of Asia: Indigenous Languages of the Himalayas Spread across five countries in the heart of Asia, the Himalayas are home to hundreds of languages, and are one our world’s major centers of linguistic diversity. Come join us at this special event as part of the International Year of Indigenous …

Linguistics: Quantifying clause chains: Genreconnected syntax in Nungon

Quantifying clause chains: Genre-connected  syntax in Nungon Hannah Sarvasy, Western Sydney University One of the ways that clause chains differ from English sentences is their potential number of coordinated clauses: over 100 clauses in a single chain are attested. But there has been no systematic study of clause chain length in a small corpus for any …

Linguistics: Intonation Matters: A prosodic phonological analysis of a courtroom discourse

Richard Yuan, Guangdong University of Foreign Studies Intonation Matters: A prosodic phonological analysis of a courtroom discourse Abstract: Have you ever seen a prosecutor bullying a defendant or other (expert) witnesses by manipulating tones (and other linguistic or paralinguistic resources) in a courtroom trial? This talk presents a prosodic phonological analysis of such courtroom discourse …

Linguistics Workshop: Language, Genes and Prehistory

Language, genes and prehistory: A One-Day Interdisciplinary Workshop Linguistics and genetics have traditionally pursued different approaches to the reconstruction of human prehistories, applying different methods and often working at different time-scales (Blench, Ross and Sanchez-Mazas 2008). In recent years, however, research has emerged which attempts a direct correlation of linguistic and genetic indicators of population …

Linguistics: How tea changed China and how China changed tea

Public Lecture Followed by Book Launch How tea changed China and how China changed tea China owes her very existence to tea. During the late Táng and the Sòng dynasty periods, China traded tea with Tibet, the Tangut kingdom and the Uighur khaganate in order to secure horses for her cavalry. Chinese horsemen never became …