The TÜling talk series is a venue for talks on a wide range of topics in linguistics, with speakers from Tartu, Estonia and elsewhere. Talks take place on Tuesdays, from 4:00–5:15 p.m. and are open to everyone, with time after the talks for questions and discussion.
Suggestions for potential speakers are very welcome: if a guest is coming to the university or colleagues in Tartu are interested in presenting a talk, please get in touch with the organisers (contact: virve.vihman [ät] ut.ee). Anyone interested in joining the mailing list is also asked to write to the same address.
Note about TÜling during the pandemic: In Fall 2021 all the TÜling talks will be web-based, altough some speakers will be on location in Tartu and presenting their talks in hybrid format, in person and online. Please chek our mailing list, the website or Facebook for updated information, as we will be adjusting plans according to national and university guidlines.
Please click on the Zoom link and use passcode 990981 for access to TÜling.
2021 Fall semester shedule
21.09 Nicole Nau (Poznan)
There are various patterns in the languages of the world which contain a repetition of linguistic material – from English well, well to Latin cucurrit ‘has run’ (vs currit ‘runs’). They can be distinguished by formal aspects (for example, what is repeated, how tightly are the repeated items connected) as well as their functions, which may be pragmatic (for example, used for confirming, correcting, or insisting on a statement), semantic (for example, expressing a degree or quantity), or grammatical (such as the expression of tense or number). While there is extensive research on repetition of material within the boundaries of a word (reduplication in the narrow sense, as in Latin cucurrit), the systematic investigation of the iteration of words and phrases started more recently. A third type of repetitive constructions, often neglected, its cognate constructions, where the same root is repeated in different words. The existence of corpora and corpus-linguistic methods has opened new possibilities for the study of all types of repetitive patterns and constructions.
In my talk I will first give an overview of the phenomenon and aspects of its investigation, and then discuss selected formal and functional aspects in detail on the basis of two case studies: iteration in Latgalian fairytales (guoja, guoja ‘walked and walked’), and cognate constructions in Latvian (runā vienā runāšanā, literally ‘talks in one talking’ = ‘talks without interruption’; runāt runā ‘talk.INF talk.PRS.3’ = ‘they talk indeed’). A common question in these studies is: when does a construction become grammatical, and what distinguishes semantic or grammatical uses of repetition from pragmatic uses?
05.10 Jolanta Šinkūnienė (Vilnius)
The expression of author stance and the ways to engage with the reader have become one of the key aspects of academic discourse investigations over the past several decades. Numerous cross-linguistic and cross-disciplinary empirical studies have revealed that stance and engagement patterns are reflective of different disciplinary and cultural traditions of academic text construction. Personal pronouns, evaluative lexis, linguistic devices mitigating or strengthening propositions, discourse structuring elements, rhetorical questions and various other elements of stance and engagement have been reported to contribute to the creation of distinct academic identity on both individual and national or disciplinary levels.
This talk will focus on stance and engagement features characteristic to the academic discourse of the Baltic states and on what they can tell us about academic identity of this small geographic region. It is based on the project “Academic Writing in the Baltic States: Rhetorical structures through culture(s) and languages”, currently in progress.
12.10 Liivi Liiholm (Viipekeeletõlkide OÜ)
Viimase mõnekümne aasta jooksul, mil eesti viipekeel on uurijate huviorbiidis olnud, on viipekeele staatus ühiskonnas oluliselt muutunud. Keel, mille kasutamist varem tauniti isegi hariduses, on täna riiklikult tunnustatud ja igapäevaselt pildil.
Loeng teeb põgusa sissevaate sellesse väiksesse kogukonda, kus eesti viipekeelt kasutatakse, ja uurimustesse, mis ühest või teisest aspektist eesti viipekeelt käsitlevad: kuidas tekivad uued viiped, missugune on eesti viipekeele grammatiline ülesehitus, kuidas keel ajas muutub. Kõrvutame eesti viipekeelt teiste viipekeeltega ja püüame leida tema haru viipekeelte keelepuus. Vaatleme ka seda, missugune mõju eesti viipekeelele on olnud ümbritseval eestikeelsel keeleruumil ja mis ootab eesti viipekeelt ees tulevikus.
19.10 Petar Kehayov (Regensburg)
Finno-Ugric languages form subordinate clauses in various ways – with finite and non-finite verb forms, with and without conjunctions, etc. All these are interesting and have been extensively studied, although the focus of researchers has always been on first-order subordinate clauses, and not on deeper embeddings (such as second- or third-order embedded clauses). Under ‘deeply embedded clause’ I mean a clause (finite, infinitival, converb or participial) which is embedded in a clause, which itself is a subordinate clause, etc – e.g. in the Finnish sentence [Lakia ehdotetaan muutettavaksi niin, [että valtioneuvosto voisi asettaa rajoituksia sellaisten yritysten koolle, [joille kehitysalueen investointitukea voidaan myöntää]]] (VISK § 1168).
Such sentences with several levels of embedding recur in debates for or against recursion as a “fundamental property of human language” which explains the excessive focus of researchers on their formal properties, such as the embedding depth, the position of the embedded clause in the superordinate clause (center-embedding vs. tail-embedding), etc. On the other hand, there are hardly any studies devoted to the grammatical semantics of such deep clausal embeddings in relation to the other clauses in the sentence; a remarkable exception is the recent work of Alexander Letuchiy (2018, 2020), which serves as an inspiration for the present talk.
What are the semantic properties (tense, aspect, modality) of such deeply embedded clauses? Are these properties determined by the immediately superordinate clause, or also by upper clauses in the embedding cycle, or can they be independently assigned – relative to the moment of speech and the reality of certain states of affairs at this moment? And finally – what kind of discoveries of a study on TAM in deep clausal embedding would pose a challenge to the recursion claim.
26.10 Matti Miestamo (Hlesinki)
Cross-linguistic typological work on negation has paid most attention to standard negation, i.e. the negation of declarative verbal main clauses. Other aspects of negation that have received at least some attention in large-scale typological studies include the negation of imperatives, the negation of stative (nonverbal, existential, etc.) predications, the negation of indefinite pronouns, abessives, the effects of negation on the marking of NPs, and negative replies to questions – for a recent overview of typological work on negation, see Miestamo 2017. Currently, typological work is underway on various aspects of the typology of negation: e.g., Veselinova’s work on negative lexicalizations and the relationship between negation and TAM, Miestamo & Koptjevskaja Tamm’s work on antonyms, Van Olmen’s work on negative imperatives, and Mauri & Sansò's work on anticircumstantial clauses as well as Miestamo, Shagal & Silvennoinen’s work on negation in dependent clauses.
In typological work, explanations for cross-linguistic generalizations are most often sought in the functional properties of the phenomenon under study. Such explanations include, for example, economy-based explanations of cross-linguistic markedness patterns, e.g. explaining the markedness of the plural by its lower text frequency as compared to the singular. In this talk, instead of first presenting typological generalizations on the structure of negatives and then discussing their possible functional explanations, I will turn the perspective around, start from the functional properties (semantics, pragmatics, processing etc) of negation and see what kinds of negative structures they may give rise to. I will discuss ways in which negation differs from affirmation in its semantics and pragmatics, paying attention for example to the discourse context of negation, and how such differences can be seen as motivating various cross-linguistically recurring structural patterns in negatives. This shift of perspective will help us to see connections between different typological properties of negatives that might otherwise go unnoticed.
van der Auwera, J. & L. Lejeune. 2005. The prohibitive. In M. Haspelmath, M. Dryer, D. Gil & B. Comrie (eds.), The world atlas of language structures, 290–293. Oxford: OUP.
Croft, W. 1991. The evolution of negation. Journal of Linguistics 27(1). 1–27.
Dahl, Ö. 1979. Typology of sentence negation. Linguistics 17. 79–106.
Dryer, M. S. 2013a. Negative morphemes. In M. Dryer & M. Haspelmath (eds.), World atlas of language structures online. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. http://wals.info/chapter/112/.
Dryer, M. 2013b. Order of negative morpheme and verb. In M. Dryer and M. Haspelmath (eds.), World atlas of language structures online. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. http://wals.info/chapter/143.
Dryer, M. 2013c. Position of negative morpheme with respect to subject, object, and verb. In M. Dryer and M. Haspelmath (eds.), World atlas of language structures online. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. http://wals.info/chapter/144.
Eriksen, P.K. 2011. ‘To not be’ or not ‘to not be’: The typology of negation of non-verbal predicates. Studies in Language 35 (2): 275-310.
Haspelmath, M. 1997. Indefinite pronouns. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Haspelmath, M. 2013. Negative indefinite pronouns and predicate negation. In M. Dryer & M. Haspelmath (eds.), World atlas of language structures online. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, http://wals.info/chapter/115.
Holmberg, A. 2015. The Syntax of Yes and No. Oxford: OUP.
Miestamo, M. 2005. Standard negation: The negation of declarative verbal main clauses in a typological perspective. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.
Miestamo, M. 2014. Partitives and negation: A cross-linguistic survey. In S. Luraghi & T. Huumo, eds., Partitive Cases and Related Categories, 63-86. Mouton de Gruyter.
Miestamo, Matti. 2016. Questionnaire for describing the negation system of a language. Available online via http://tulquest.huma-num.fr/fr/node/134.
Miestamo, M. 2017. Negation. In A. Aikhenvald & R. M. W. Dixon, eds., The Cambridge Handbook of Linguistic Typology, 405-439. Cambridge: CUP.
Payne, J. 1985. Negation. In T. Shopen (ed.), Language typology and syntactic description, volume I, Clause structure, 197–242. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Stolz, T., C. Stroh & A. Urdze. 2007. WITH(OUT): On the markedness relations between comitatives/instrumentals and abessives. Word 58(2). 63-122.
Van Alsenoy, L. 2014. A New Typology of Indefinite Pronouns, with a Focus on Negative Indefinites. U Antwerp dissertation.
Veselinova, L. 2013. Negative existentials: A cross-linguistic study. Rivista di linguistica 25 (1): 107-145.
02.11 Ann Veismann (Tartu)
Kui kaassõnad moodustavad suhteliselt väikse ja kindlapiirilise sõnaklassi (neid saab loendada sadades), siis määrsõnade klass on nii eesti keeles kui ka teistes keeltes suur ja heterogeenne (loendatakse tuhandetes). Kahe klassi ühisossa kuuluvad sõnad, mis võivad samas tähenduses olla kord kaassõnad (üle põllu), kord määrsõnad (sõitis üle). Tavalisem on selline varieeruvus kohatähenduslike sõnade puhul, kuid mõningal määral ka muudes tähendustes. Koos verbiga võib olla moodustunud ka uue tähendusega tervik, ainukordne ühendverb (üle minema, läbi kukkuma). Kuid kaassõna ja ühendverbi vahel eksisteerib nende sõnade puhul lisaks veel mitmesuguseid kasutusi, kus komplemendiks sobiv sõna on kas juurde mõeldav (kaassõnafraas on elliptiline), grammatiliste käänete asemel kohakäändes (august läbi) või asendab komplementi lokatiivne proadverb (sealt läbi). Süntaktiliselt eristab kaassõnalist ja adverbilist esinemist kaassõna lahutamatus komplemendist, samas kui adverb ja nimisõna ei pea paiknema kõrvuti. Kaassõnadega lähendab adverbilisi kasutusi seotus pigem komplemendilaadse nimisõnaga kui verbiga. Sellise sõnaliigilise varieeruvuse taga on nähtud eelkõige pragmaatilisi ja infostruktuurilisi tegureid, kuid ka verbi semantikast tulenevaid eristusi. Oma ettekandes arutlen kaas- ja määrsõna vahelise kontiinumi näidete üle. Uurin, millised semantilised tegurid võiksid mõjutada sõna kasutamist kord kaassõna, kord adverbina ning kas ja kuidas mõjutab sagedus sõnade esinemist ühes või teises koosluses.
09.11 Nele Põldvere (Lund/Oslo)
Spoken English in time and across time: Constructions, context, corpora
16.11 Miina Norvik (Tartu/Uppsala)
Läänemeresoome keelte struktuurijoonte püsivus ja muutuvus
23.11 Lilia Rissman (Wisconsin)
Thematic roles such as Agent and Patient are ubiquitous in theories of the syntax/semantics interface (where in "Joel cut the bread," Joel is characterized as an Agent and the bread as a Patient). Despite this ubiquity, thematic roles have for decades been criticized as lacking theoretical utility and psychological reality. In this talk, I focus on the Instrument role (e.g., the knife in "Joel cut the bread with a knife"), asking whether such a role has broad explanatory value in linguistics and cognitive science. I present an analysis of the English instrumental markers "with" and "use", arguing that Agent but not Instrument is needed as a semantic primitive to account for these words’ meanings. It would be hasty, however, to abandon instrumentality as a category, as elicited video descriptions and sentence acceptability judgments demonstrate a stable Instrumental prototype across English, Dutch, and German. In addition, data from child homesigners (deaf children who have been taught neither a spoken nor a sign language) suggest ways of linguistically encoding the role of an Instrument that are shared across cultures. Taken together, these results suggest that Instrument is a prominent category in cognition but that this category is not directly reflected in English word meaning.
30.11 Marja-Liisa Helasvuo (Turku)
Low transitivity predications in Finnish: comparing copula clauses and free NPs in Finnish interaction
14.09 Kapitolina Fedorova (Tallinn)
Linguistic landscape studies focusing on written use of languages in public places is a fast developing field in sociolinguistics. Collecting and analysing signs and advertisements found in the streets of different cities, towns and villages reveals patterns of language use, language contacts, and power relations between different speech communities. Estonia, as a multilingual country with a long history of foreign influences, makes a fascinating case for analysis. In the presentation, issues of methodology of linguistic landscape studies will be discussed in relation to the Estonian context, the project LinguaSnapp Tallinn which is currently under development will be presented, and several sets of data from Tallinn, Narva and other Estonian cities will be analysed with the focus on multilingual practices and contact-induced changes in Estonian Russian.