Come to the Greenberg Room on Monday 5/20 from 12:15-1:05. Ellen Markman (Psychology) will be presenting for the SymSys Forum, a talk entitled “How children generalize what they have learned: Factors that affect the scope, importance, and robustness of generalization”.
A fundamental component of learning is how to extend what was learned to new exemplars, situations, and contexts. Recent advances in the field have revealed that accumulating statistical evidence over time is only one of the factors that effects generalization. Moreover generalization is itself multifaceted: Is the new information deemed applicable to a narrow or broad range of exemplars or situations? Is the information acquired construed as central, definitive, essential or as less important? Is the generalization robust, made with confidence, or tentative and easily revised? To sort all of this out, children rely on a variety of sources of information including: (a) prior knowledge (b) linguistically conveyed information such as generic versus non-generic language (c) other communicative and social means of conveying information such as pragmatics, intentional versus accidental actions, the pedagogical stance, and trust in testimony. I will review recent research that highlights how children navigate these complicated issues.
Terra Edwards (Berkeley) will be presenting for the Anthropology brown bag forum on Monday 5/20 from 12-1:05 in 50-51A. The title and abstract are below. Come on by!
Language Emergence as Condensation in the Seattle Deaf-Blind Community
This paper examines the socio-genesis of a tactile language currently emerging among Deaf-Blind people in Seattle, Washington. Language emergence has been understood in recent work on signed languages as a moment when form-meaning correspondences abstract away from the contexts of their use. Language emergence in the Seattle Deaf-Blind community suggests instead that via “condensation”, the linguistic system grows dense with its history of use. Read the rest of this entry »
Asya Pereltsvaig will be presenting at SMircle on Tuesday, May 14th, at 2pm in the Greenberg Room, on “Differential Object Marking in Tatar and the Functional Architecture of the Noun Phrase”. Abstract:
In Tatar, as in other Turkic languages such as Turkish and Sakha, objects may be either overtly case marked (Accusative) or unmarked; cf. (1). Several different accounts have been proposed in the literature explaining this alternation either in terms of the semantics of the object (e.g. specificity, cf. Enç 1991) or in terms of its position in the clause (cf. Baker & Vinokurova 2010). In this paper, we propose an alternative analysis in terms of the amount of functional architecture in the object. Specifically, we argue that DP objects receive structural (accusative) Case, as in (1a), while Small Nominals (SNs; i.e. NPs or NumPs; cf. Pereltsvaig 2006) remain Caseless, as in (1b). Moreover, we argue that neither the semantic approach, nor the positional analysis can account for the full range of data about DOM in Tatar (which comes from our fieldwork on a particular subdialect of Tatar).