Indiana University

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Events for the week :
February 17, 2013 - February 23, 2013
February 17
February 18
  • Unresolved issues in category-specific research

    Time: 01:30pm - 02:30pm 

    Place: Psychology 128


    Panel discussion with Marlene Behrmann (Carnegie Mellon University)

    To give you a flavor of what will be covered, below are the three main areas that will be discussed:

    A. Face, word & object processing: Why are wholes greater than the sum of parts? Are parts combined to make wholes? How does timing of processing affect these considerations?

    B. Is there such a thing as category-specificity in the brain? [Evidence for and against] If so, how does it arise? [Developmental: innate specification; Mature system: effects of expertise]

    C. Are category-specific brain areas separate and independent? If not, how do regions interact given that the brain is a highly interconnected network of different regions?


    In category: Morphosyntax and semantics


  • Distributed neural circuits, not circumscribed centers, mediate both face and word recognition

    Time: 04:00pm - 05:00pm 

    Place: Psychology 101


    Marlene Behrmann (Carnegie Mellon University)

    In contrast with the claim that there are domain-specific neural correlates underlying face recognition and underlying word recognition, I will propose that these two seemingly unrelated domains are subserved by a common, distributed circuit. This circuit becomes tuned, over the course of development, to be optimized, in the left hemisphere, for orthographic inputs, and, in the right hemisphere, for faces. Corresponding behavioral and neural evidence obtained from normal children, adolescents and adults, revealing the developmental trajectory of this behavior/brain system, as well as from adults with neuropsychological impairments (prosopagnosia and pure alexia) will be presented. I will place specific emphasis on the relative contribution of the nodes of this network as revealed by functional and structural connectivity as well as by resting state studies. The emergence of this distributed network will also be explored in the context of a computational model in which three specific principles (distributed representation and knowledge; representational cooperation and competition; and topography, proximity, and hemispheric organization) are instantiated and I will argue that the integrated application of these principles leads to common consequences for cortical organization and behavior in two seemingly unrelated domains.


    In category: Morphosyntax and semantics


February 19
  • The Serbi-Mongolic Language Family: Old Chinese, Middle Chinese, Old Mandarin, and Old Tibetan Records on the Hsien-pei (Xianbei) Languages and their Relationship to Mongolic, with Notes on Chinese Phonology

    Time: 10:00am - 12:00pm 

    Place: Indiana Memorial Union, Distinguished Alumni Room


    Andrew E. Shimunek

    Although most scholars now generally agree that the Serbi (Xianbei) languages, including Kitan (Qidan) and Taghbach (Tuoba), are divergently related to Mongolic, up until now their Mongolic affinity has only been hinted at – no rigorous, systematic attempt has been made to present a precise, testable, and potentially falsifiable theory based on the standard historical-comparative linguistic criteria for language classification. I demonstrate in this dissertation that Kitan, Taghbach, and ‘Azha – the best-attested Serbi languages – are related to Mongolic, but descend not from Proto-Mongolic, but from Proto-Serbi, and that both Proto-Mongolic and Proto-Serbi descend from a common ancestor, Proto-Serbi-Mongolic.

    For early languages which have been extensively studied by historical linguists, general grammatical sketches are usually not a prerequisite to a historical-comparative linguistic study involving data from such languages, but very few general linguists have studied the Serbi languages. To date, with few exceptions, Taghbach, Kitan, and ‘Azha have mostly been studied by philologists and historians who have not been particularly interested in describing their lexicons, phonologies, and grammatical structures in such a way as to compare them with other languages at both synchronic and diachronic levels. This preliminary work is necessary before demonstrating their divergent relationship with Mongolic. This dissertation thus presents brief sketches of as much as can be gleaned of the linguistic structures of Taghbach, ‘Azha, and Kitan. Since most of these languages arc primarily known from Chinese and Old Tibetan transcriptions, I first provide phonological accounts of the transcriptional languages – frontier varieties of Old Chinese, Middle Chinese, Old Mandarin, and Old Tibetan. The linguistic approach to Serbi data in this dissertation has also allowed for a preliminary reconstruction of Proto-Serbi-Mongolic, identification of ethnolinguistic contacts in the formative early history and prehistory of the Serbi-Mongolic language family, and a revised analysis of Kitan Assembled Script orthography.


    In category: Phonetics and phonology


February 20
  • Semantic space models, they’re not just for language anymore, or reading between the lines

    Time: 12:10pm - 01:10pm 

    Place: Psychology conference room (PY 128)


    Brent Kievit-Kylar

    In this talk we will explore how multi-sensory or multi-domain information can be used in cross-modal learning using semantic space models. Domains of interest will include the Semantic Pictionary project (in which visual, geon based representations are generated and validated by subjects), inter-language learning and semantic space comparisons, the CHILDES corpus (learning object label references) and prediction across different sensory modalities (smell and taste). We will also discuss novel search interaction tools that have evolved out of the results of these experiments.


    In category: Morphosyntax and semantics


February 21
  • Talker-Specific Models of Speech Production (and what they are good for)

    Time: 11:00am - 12:00pm 

    Place: Speech and Hearing Center, Room C141


    Steven Lulich

    In many applications, knowledge about a talker can be extremely useful. For instance, in automatic speech recognition, a model of the talker based on acoustic analysis can be deployed to improve performance in the face of significant talker-to-talker variability, especially when child talkers are involved. Generic finite-element models of vocal fold vibration can be merged with talker-specific data gleaned from high speech endoscopic video in order to evaluate vocal fold tissue properties of individuals peri-operatively. In this talk, a framework for thinking about and developing talker-specific models of speech production will be outlined, together with several examples of potential applications. Progress toward these ends will be presented, with particular focus on the estimation of lung and subglottis geometry, and tracheal soft tissue and vocal fold mechanical properties.


    In category: Phonetics and phonology


February 22
  • The investigation of form-function mappings: Referential expressions and encoding of referential status in L2 narrative discourse by L1-English learners of Japanese

    Time: 02:30pm - 04:00pm 

    Place: Ballantine Hall 205


    Miyuki Takeuchi

    The acquisition of referential expressions, including particles, is one of the most challenging tasks that learners of Japanese face. The goal of the present study is to find what the referential systems of learners at each developmental stage are, how the systems undergo change with increased input and instruction, and whether and how leaners attain the target norms. To investigate these, L1-English learners of Japanese at five different proficiency levels (N=75) are recruited, and they do two kinds of narrative tasks. The use of nominative referential forms in the narratives, NP-ga (nominative marker), NP-wa (topic marker), and null anaphora are analyzed with respect to the discourse functions that these forms serve, i.e., encoding of referential (information) status. The pilot study found (a) relatively early acquisition of null anaphora, (b) overuse of NP-wa at the early stage, (c) delayed emergence of NP-ga, and (d) residual indeterminancy of the distinctive use of NP-ga and NP- wa. The present study attempts to build on these findings to reveal more comprehensive processes of the acquisition and causes of the challenges that learners may be facing. In addition to the investigation of learners' narratives, the textbooks used in the institution where the informants were recruited are analyzed as to how much and in what functions NP-ga, NP-wa, and null anaphora are introduced in the texts. This serves as a data base for the discussion of possible relations between class input and learners' performance. Based on the findings, pedagogy will be developed for more effective instruction of Japanese referential expressions.


    In category: Second language acquisition


  • Poeticizing the economy: Market forces, heteroglossic performances and language on the French island of Corsica

    Time: 06:00pm - 07:00pm 

    Place: Glenn A Black Laboratory of Archaeology Room 101 (423 N Fess Avenue)


    Alexandra Jaffe (California State University, Long Beach)

    (Keynote for the 7th Annual Anthropological Graduate Student Association Symposium)


    In category: Sociolinguistics and pragmatics


February 23
  • Hispanic Linguistics I

    Time: 08:15am - 09:10am 

    Place: IMU Maple Room


    Language contact and variable grammatical gender agreement: A comparison of Paraguayan and Mexican Spanish
    Elizabeth Herring (Indiana University)

    The innovative use of estar in Spanish-Quechua bilinguals of Peru: A change motivated by internal factors
    Margaret Cychosz (Indiana University)

    Formas de tratamiento y segundas personas de plural en “La Argentina manuscrita” [Forms of treatment and second-person plural in “La Argentina manuscrita”]
    César Gutiérrez (Purdue University)

    (Part of the Spanish & Portuguese Graduate Student Research Conference)


    In category: Sociolinguistics and pragmatics


  • Hispanic Linguistic II

    Time: 10:00am - 10:35am 

    Place: IMU Maple Room


    Variación de le/les en diferentes zonas hispanoparlantes: México, Colombia y España [Variation of le/les in different Spanish-speaking areas: Mexico, Colombia and Spain]
    Andrea Mojedano (Indiana University)

    Topic Continuity in Caviteño
    Sheryl Bernardo-Hinesley (University of Massachusetts)

    A variationist approach to analyzing change in contact situations: VOT duration in U.S. English-Spanish bilinguals of Colombian Heritage
    Sara Zahler (Indiana University)

    (Part of the Spanish & Portuguese Graduate Student Research Conference)


    In category: Unclassified


  • Evidence of a common neural substrate for stone toolmaking and language syntax: An activation likelihood estimate meta-analysis

    Time: 10:45am - 11:00am 

    Place: Glenn A Black Laboratory of Archaeology Room 101 (423 N Fess Avenue)


    Robert Mahaney and Katherine Babcock

    (Part of the 7th Annual Anthropological Graduate Student Association Symposium)


    In category: Morphosyntax and semantics


  • Vernacularization, Globalization, and Contact Variants: A Case Study

    Time: 01:00pm - 02:15pm 

    Place: IMU Redbud Room


    Dr. Anna Maria Escobar (University of Illinois - Urbana-Champaign)

    (Keynote address for the Spanish & Portuguese Graduate Student Research Conference)


    In category: Sociolinguistics and pragmatics


  • Lost in translation? An analysis of Gothic gender

    Time: 01:15pm - 01:45pm 

    Place: State Room East, Indiana Memorial Union


    Roslyn Burns (University of California-Berkeley)

    (Part of the Ninth Biennial Graduate Student Conference, Department of Germanic Studies)


    In category: Morphosyntax and semantics


  • Oblique adverbs: They once were real in the Germanic languages

    Time: 01:45pm - 02:15pm 

    Place: State Room East, Indiana Memorial Union


    Elliot Evans (Indiana University)

    (Part of the Ninth Biennial Graduate Student Conference, Department of Germanic Studies)


    In category: Morphosyntax and semantics


  • Hispanic Linguistics III

    Time: 02:15pm - 02:40pm 

    Place: IMU Maple Room


    On L1 interaction in a CLT [communicative language teaching] environment: Exploring the function
    Rebecca Clay (Indiana University)

    Use of the English Subjunctive by L1 English/L2 Spanish Bilinguals
    Melissa Whatley (Indiana University)

    (Part of the Spanish & Portuguese Graduate Student Research Conference)


    In category: Second language acquisition


  • Semantic Distribution of U.S. College Nicknames

    Time: 05:30pm - 05:45pm 

    Place: Glenn A Black Laboratory of Archaeology Room 101 (423 N Fess Avenue)


    Elena Doludenko

    (Part of the 7th Annual Anthropological Graduate Student Association Symposium)


    In category: Morphosyntax and semantics


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