I am a PhD candidate in the linguistics department at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. I am especially interested in exploring how fieldwork on understudied languages, especially Navajo (Diné Bizaad), can inform and guide formal semantic theory. I work on the semantics of adjectives, modification, and modality in both Navajo and English.
- Invited speaker at SULA 8 (Semantics of Under-represented Languages in the Americas) at the University of British Columbia, May 16-18, 2014, where I presented the paper ‘The decomposition of belief and desire ‘.I spoke about a single attitude predicate in Navajo (nízin) used both to express attitudes of desire (‘want’) and belief (‘think’), which is the focus of my dissertation.
- Presented a paper (‘Interpreting DP-modifying modal adverbs‘) at SALT 24, held at NYU, May 30-June 1, 2014. My presentation examined opaque and transparent interpretations of DPs modified by epistemic modal adverbs.
More recent work and papers to appear:
- Decomposing Notions of Adjectival Transitivity in Navajo. 2013. Natural Language Semantics 21(3): 277-314. (supersedes ‘Decomposing Adjectival Meaning in Navajo’ (2010).)
- Modification of DPs by epistemic modal adverbs. 2013. In the proceedings of the Amsterdam Colloquium 2013.
- Investigating gradable predicates, comparison, and degree constructions in underrepresented languages. To appear in Methodologies in Semantic Fieldwork, M. Ryan Bochnak and Lisa Matthewson, eds. Oxford University Press.
- Wondering about the alternatives in Navajo. To appear in Proceedings of WCCFL 31.
- A focus sensitive modal operator in Navajo. 2013. UMass ms. Longer paper related to WCCFL 31 proceedings paper.
- Expressing uncertainty with gisa in Tshangla. To appear in Proceedings of WCCFL 31. With Anisa Schardl.
- Slightly coerced: Processing evidence for adjectival coercion by minimizers. To appear in Proceedings of the 48th Meeting of the Chicago Linguistic Society: Parasession on Meaning and Cognition.
- Processing Evidence for the Scales of Negative Evaluative Adjectives. 2011. UMass ms. Longer paper related to CLS 48 proceedings paper.
- Positively Uninformative. To appear in the proceedings of the MIT Workshop on Comparatives.
Older papers and handouts:
- Distribution and Function of Comparative Aspect in Athabaskan/Dene. 2010. In Proceedings of the 2009 Athabaskan Languages Conference. Justin Spence and Siri Tuttle, eds. Fairbanks, AK: ANLC.
- Gradability and Degree Constructions in Navajo. 2008. Swarthmore College, unpublished BA thesis.
- Navajo Degree Constructions and the Decompositional Analysis of Gradable Predicates. 2009. Presented at 83rd LSA Meeting
- The Morphosyntax of Navajo Comparatives and the Degree Argument. 2009. Presented at 2009 meeting of SSILA, San Francisco.
For material not linked to here, email me.
Department of Linguistics
226 South College Bldg.
University of Massachusetts
150 Hicks Way
Amherst, MA 01003