Gender, class, and determination

Gender, class, and determination

University of Ottawa

Department of Linguistics

Invited speakers

  • Paolo Acquaviva (UCD)
  • Alan Bale (Concordia)
  • Hagit Borer (QMUL)
  • Marijke De Belder (KU Leuven)
  • Zeljko Boskovic (UConn)
  • Jessica Coon (McGill)
  • Rose-Marie Déchaine (UBC)
  • Abdelkader Fassi Fehri (Rabat)
  • Jila Ghomeshi (Manitoba)
  • Carrie Gillon (ASU)
  • Ruth Kramer (Georgetown)
  • Diane Massam (Toronto)
  • Sarah Ouwayda (University of Geneva)
  • Elizabeth Ritter (Ben Gurion & Calgary)
  • Martina Wiltschko (UBC)

Student invited speaker:

  • Clarissa Forbes (Toronto)

September 18-20, 2015

The conference will take place at the Novotel 33 Nicholas Street
 Ottawa, Ontario
 K1N 9M7
 (613 230-3033). Aurora room, on the third floor.

This conference, the ninth in a series dedicated to issues in the syntax and semantics of the noun phrase,
brings together a working group of Canadian and international linguists who specialize on the noun phrase. We are interested in the many ways in which natural languages categorize nouns into genders or classes. A noun may belong to a given class because of its logical or symbolic similarities with other nouns, because it shares a similar
morphological form with other nouns, or simply through an arbitrary convention. We try to determine
what is responsible for this type of classification, paying special attention to the functional and lexical
categories that make up the syntactic spine. This topic is a natural continuation in the Canadian series on
nouns, which has considered various other aspects of structure internal to noun phrases (e.g. relative
clauses, modifiers, determiners). This conference focuses specifically on how gender can sometimes
function as a classifying device and how, in the absence of gender as a classifying device, determiners
and other functional elements in the nominal spine come to fill that gap. The papers in this conference will focus on empirical questions such as these but many other questions will arise:
I. What is the relationship between gender, number and classification?
II. What is the role of the plural (some languages have many plurals, e.g. Arabic)?
III. What is the role of the determiner in the noun phrase? Is it obligatory, is it related to phasehood, and
if so, how?

See call for papers

Organizing committee: Myriam Dali, Eric Mathieu, Gita Zareikar