Author Archives: Joe Pater

Journal of Phonology collection available

From Geoff Nathan

As part of downsizing after retirement I am thinning my journal collection. I have a virtually complete set of the journal Phonology (originally Yearbook of Phonology). It occupies about one standard box of 8 1/2 X 11 paper supplies. Does anyone want it, or have any suggestions of what I can do with it besides putting it in recycling?


Geoffrey S. Nathan
WSU Information Privacy Officer (Retired)
Emeritus Professor, Linguistics Program


Hussain et al. (2019) — Punjabi (Lyallpuri variety)

Punjabi (Western, ISO-639-3 pnb) is an Indo-Aryan language (Indo-European, Indo-Iranian) spoken in Pakistan and India, and in immigrant communities in the UK, Canada, USA, and elsewhere. In terms of number of native speakers, it is ranked 10th among the world’s languages, with more than 100 million speakers (Lewis, Simons & Fennig 2016). Aspects of the phonology of different varieties of Punjabi have been described in Jain (1934), Arun (1961), Gill & Gleason (1962), Singh (1971), Dulai & Koul (1980), Bhatia (1993), Malik (1995), Shackle (2003), and Dhillon (2010). Much of this literature is focused on Eastern varieties, and the phonology of Western Punjabi dialects has received relatively less attention (e.g. Bahri 1962, Baart 2003, 2014).

Save the date! 07-08 Feb, 2020. Phonological Representations: A Workshop of the Berkeley Linguistics Society.

ANNOUNCING the Berkeley Linguistic Society Workshop
“Phonological Representations: At the Crossroad between Gradience and Categoricity”

Date: 07-Feb-2020 – 08-Feb-2020
Location: Berkeley, California, USA

Meeting Description

Describing the sounds of language has always been a central concern of both linguistic phonetics and theoretical phonology. The central tension between informational abstraction and phonetic concreteness is resolved in ways that differ based partly on one’s theoretical aims. In some cases phonologists use continuously valued representations to derive categorical effects, while in other cases phonologists use categorical representations to derive gradient effects. Phoneticians, psycholinguists and neuroscientists are also concerned with whether representations that are useful in describing the information structure of language sound systems are also useful in capturing facts about the cognitive implementation of phonology.

Workshop participants will represent several different attitudes toward these questions, and one of the goals of the workshop is to discuss whether these different aims are fundamentally incompatible, or whether we can we find a system of description that is successful in both accounting for information structure and for the cognition of language use.

Confirmed speakers include Bruce Hayes (UCLA), Stephanie Shih (USC), Kevin Ryan (Harvard), and Katie Drager (Hawaii).

A full call for papers will be published in Sept. 2019.


Call for Papers: Journées FLORAL-(I)PFC 2019: French in the World

Since 2002, the international research programme PFC (Phonologie du français contemporain/ Phonology of Contemporary French,, which gathers an international panel of linguists working on French corpus phonology, yearly organises a conference in Paris. The objective of this meeting is to move forward French phonology in a welcoming and scientifically critical atmosphere. It is thus a meeting place for researchers, both junior and senior ones, who wish to discuss their ongoing work – whether it focuses on phenomena well-known or little known in the scientific literature. The PFC programme, primarily devoted to phonology, has in the last few years
been extended to cover other domains of linguistics, i.e. syntax and sociolinguistics, leading to a collaboration with the Laboratoire Ligérien de Linguistique de l’Université d’Orléans, and the creation of a research network on oral French: FLORAL (Français Langue Orale et Recherches Avancées en Linguistique/Oral French and Advanced Studies in Linguistics). PFC further focuses on interphonology and the pedagogical aspects of pronunciation through the daughter project IPFC (Interphonologie du français contemporain/ Interphonology of Contemporary French,
The conference “Journées FLORAL-(I)PFC 2019” is organised around two main topics:
  1. Francophonie and phonologies in contact
  2. Interphonology and didactics of oral French
The format of the contributions will be 20 minutes for presentation and 10 minutes for discussion. Other formats can be considered all depending on the number of abstracts received. We accept presentations in French and English.
The abstract (1 page including title and references) must be sent by email to Helene N. Andreassen (, Elissa Pustka ( and Isabelle Racine (
Submission deadline: Monday 16 September 2018.
Thanks for sharing this call for papers with other linguists you think might be interested. More information about the conference will be published at the PFC website:
Conference organising committee:
Helene N. Andreassen, UiT The Arctic University of Norway
Olivier Baude, Paris Nanterre University/HUMA-NUM
Marie-Hélène Coté, University of Lausanne
Sylvain Detey, Waseda University
Julien Eychenne, Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
Elissa Pustka, University of Vienna
Isabelle Racine, University of Geneva

Call for papers: Annual Meeting on Phonology 2019

We are seeking high-quality unpublished research in all areas of theoretical, experimental, and computational phonology for presentation at the 2019 Annual Meeting on Phonology (AMP 2019), to take place October 11-13, 2019 and hosted by the Linguistics Department at the Stony Brook University. This is the seventh installment of the Annual Meetings on Phonology, following the 2013 inaugural meeting at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and subsequent meetings hosted by MIT, UBC/SFU, USC, NYU and UCSD.

This year’s conference features two workshops entitled “Advances in Computational Phonology” and “The Phonology-Syntax Interface in the World’s Languages” with associated tutorials and invited speakers. We are particularly interested in high-quality research submissions that address the themes of these workshops.

Submission Guidelines

We invite abstracts for either oral presentations or poster presentations. Abstracts must be anonymous, so please be sure to eliminate any identifying information and metadata from the document. Length is limited to a maximum of two single-spaced pages (US Letter), figures and references included. Font size should be 12-point, with margins of at least one inch (2.54cm) left on all sides. Abstracts must be submitted in .pdf file format.

Submissions are limited to three per author, with at most one submission being single-authored.

The deadline for abstract submission is Monday, June 3, 11:59pm EST (23:59 GMT-5).

Abstract submission link:

Invited Speakers


All questions about the conference should be emailed to


All presentations (in both the general and workshop sessions) are eligible for publication in the open-access on-line conference proceedings hosted by the Linguistic Society of America. Oral presentations will appear in the main Proceedings and poster presentations will appear in the Supplemental Proceedings.


CALL FOR PAPERS – Recursivity in phonology, below and above the word (RecPhon2019)

CALL FOR PAPERS – Recursivity in phonology, below and above the word (RecPhon2019)
21-22 November 2019, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Bellaterra  
Abstract submission deadline: June 1, 2019
Research Questions
We encourage speakers to address, although not exclusively, some of the research questions formulated below, either arguing in favor or against recursivity in phonology, and from any theoretical perspective and methodology, including phonological formal analyses of particular languages, language typology, language acquisition, laboratory phonology, psycholinguistics or neurolinguistics.
– Does recursivity in phonology exist at all?
– If recursivity in phonology exists, what exactly can or cannot trigger a recursive structure in the domain of the syntax-phonology interface?
– Is recursivity restricted to higher-ordered phonological constituents like the phonological phrase and the intonational phrase? If so, why?
– What is the empirical evidence to posit recursive structures above the word?
– Does ternarity exist in phonology (at the level of the metrical foot or at higher-ordered levels) or should it be derived from recursive structures?
– If recursivity in phonology also exists below the level of the phonological word, does it show an upper bound on nesting?
– Does recursivity also exist below the level of the metrical foot, i.e. the syllable, the mora?
– What is the empirical evidence to posit recursive structures below the word?
– What does recursivity add to the prosodic bootstrapping hypothesis, the idea that L1 learners use prosodic features as a cue to identify more abstract properties of grammar such as syntactic constituency?
– Can neural correlates of phonological recursion be observed?
Invited speakers
* Emily Elfner (York University, Canada)
* Junko Ito (University of California, Santa Cruz)
* Armin Mester (University of California, Santa Cruz)
Submission of abstracts
The workshop will feature 45 minute talks (30-35 minutes followed by 15-10 minutes for comments and questions). Abstracts must be submitted through EasyChair ( by the 1st of June, 2019. Abstracts will be reviewed by 3 anonymous reviewers.
Abstract guidelines
Abstracts must be anonymous, maximally 1 page long (A4), with an extra page for figures, examples, tables and references, 12 pt Times New Roman, with one-inch (2.54 cm) margins on all sides, and written in English, PDF format.
Important dates
Abstract submission deadline: June 1, 2019
Notification of acceptance: July 15, 2019
Program announcement: September 15, 2019
Registration: October 1 – November 1, 2019

Pater 2019: Phonological typology in Optimality Theory and Formal Language Theory: Goals and future directions.

Pater, Joe. To appear 2019. Phonological typology in Optimality Theory and Formal Language Theory: Goals and future directions. In Phonology.

Abstract.Much recent work has studied phonological typology in terms of formal language theory (e.g. the Chomsky hierarchy). This paper considers whether Optimality Theory grammars might be constrained to generate only regular languages, and also whether the tools of formal language theory might be used for constructing phonological theories similar to those within Optimality Theory. It offers reasons to be optimistic about the first possibility, and skeptical about the second.


Nyman and Tesar 2019: Determining underlying presence in the learning of grammars that allow insertion and deletion

Nyman, Alexandra and Bruce Tesar. 2019. Determining underlying presence in the learning of grammars that allow insertion and deletion. Glossa: a journal of general linguistics 4(1): 37. 1–41. DOI:

The simultaneous learning of a phonological map from inputs to outputs and a lexicon of phonological underlying forms has been a focus of several research efforts (Jarosz 2006; Apoussidou 2007; Merchant 2008; Merchant & Tesar 2008; Tesar 2014). One of the numerous challenges is that of computational efficiency, which led to the investigation of learning with output-driven maps (Tesar 2014). Prior work on learning with output-driven maps has focused on systems in which the only disparities between inputs and outputs were segmental identity disparities (differences in the value of a feature). Inclusion of segmental insertion and deletion disparities exacerbates computational concerns, as it increases the number of possible correspondence relations between an input and an output, and makes the space of possible inputs for a word infinite due to the possible presence of an unbounded number of deleted segments. We propose an extension of that earlier work to handle phonologies that permit insertion and deletion, and evaluate the proposal by applying it to cases in Basic CV Syllable Theory (Jakobson 1962; Clements & Keyser 1983; Prince & Smolensky 2004). First, we propose that a learner represent information about the possible presence/absence of a segment in an underlying form via a presence feature. The presence feature can be set using the same inconsistency detection method that has previously been used to set other segmental features. This allows the learner to combine evidence from paradigmatically related words in a single compact representation. Second, we propose that the learner only consider for underlying forms segments that surface in at least one surface realization of the morpheme. This approach is justified by the structure of output-driven maps, and avoids the potential for an unbounded number of possibly deleted segments in an underlying form. A proof is given for the validity of the method for avoiding unbounded deletion. The resulting learner is able to learn some grammatical regularities about segmental insertion and deletion; this is shown via two manual step-by-step applications of the algorithm. Verificatory simulations for learning the entire typology of Basic CV Syllable Theory are left to work in the near future.


Call for Posters: Language and Music Workshop May 12, 2019

The UMass Amherst Department of Linguistics and the Department of Music and Dance will host a Language and Music Workshop on the afternoon of Sunday May 12th. There are five invited speakers, listed below, and we invite interested participants to submit brief abstracts for poster presentations (250 – 500 words of text) by Wednesday May 1st by using this Google form:

We expect to be able to be very liberal in accepting posters, and so wanted the submission format to be relatively informal. If it would be more convenient to submit a .pdf, please fill out the form with names and affiliations, and e-mail the .pdf to

Updates about the workshop can be found here:


Mara Breen – Mount Holyoke College

The Cat in the Hat: Musical and linguistic metric structure realization in child-directed poetry

François Dell – Centre de Recherches Linguistiques sur l’Asie Orientale (CRLAO) CNRS / EHESS, Paris

Delivery design: towards a typology

Bob Ladd – University of Edinburgh

Two problems in theories of tone-melody matching

Laura McPherson – Dartmouth College

Tonal adaptation across musical modality: A comparison of Sambla vocal music and speech surrogates

Christopher White – University of Massachusetts Amherst

Analogies with Language in Machine-learned Musical Grammars