journal publication (Antipassives)

Daniel Everett dlevere at ILSTU.EDU
Mon Mar 29 16:05:56 UTC 2010

On the other hand, sorry for this p.s. to my previous posting, in some cases the readership will be so small that the main people to read something will be those who would have provided the peer review in any case.

I suspect that the average linguistic article is read by a couple of dozen people or so, depending on how specific its focus.

In any case, I am certainly a supporter of peer review. That should be the unmarked case. But I don't think that this precludes the occasional exception. Certainly in the early days of TG, prior to the internet, many articles were cited extensively before they ever appeared in print, sometimes more than a year before. 

But, again, I am not supporting this as a new norm. Sorry if I gave that impression.


On 29 Mar 2010, at 11:57, Johanna Nichols wrote:

> Self-publishing bypasses peer review, and peer review is a much more
> important function of journal publication than boosting careers is.  Peer
> review is so essential to distinguishing science from pseudoscience that I
> don't think it should be bypassed, at least not very often.
> Johanna Nichols
> dlevere at ILSTU.EDU wrote:
>> I agree with most of what Martin says. However, I don't think that if
>> senior scholars self-publish this puts junior scholars at a
>> disadvantage. In fact, I would think the opposite. It frees up journal
>> space for them. I think that selective journals are crucial for the
>> careers of junior scholars. And if senior scholars need the 'credit'
>> in some sort of evaluative process, e.g. the UK's RAE or some such,
>> then publication in a selective journal is always preferred. But for
>> well-established scholars who want to make interesting work available
>> but aren't worried about impressing review committees, I think
>> self-publishing is a useful option.
>> I certainly do not understand what the hesitation would be to use and
>> cite such materials. (In fact, you can publish any monograph on
>> and charge for downloads if you'd prefer. I don't recall
>> seeing a linguistic monograph published in this way, but other
>> disciplines, most notably philosophy, seem to do this from time to
>> time.)
>> Dan
>> Quoting Martin Haspelmath <haspelmath at EVA.MPG.DE>:
>>> Since increasingly, even papers from "print journals" are printed out
>>> rather than retrieved from a library in paper form, the difference is
>>> now mainly between journals with page number restrictions and journals
>>> without page number restrictions. The latter are obviously preferable
>>> (in typology, we have one so far:
>>> It seems to me that the future of linguistics lies in abandoning
>>> monograph publication, and shifting to journal-only publication.
>>> Increasingly, as linguists compete for resources with other
>>> disciplines, journal publication is seen as counting more. (In fact, it
>>> may make sense to go as far as relabeling entire book series as
>>> journals, to help evaluators and funding agencies see linguistics as
>>> what it is, a respectable science.)
>>> Martin
>>> P.S. I wouldn't recommend the "self-publishing" strategy suggested by
>>> Dan Everett as an option. As he notes, this is not available to junior
>>> scholars, so if it became acceptable, it would put them at a
>>> disadvantage. I think we should not cite unpublished work that isn't
>>> evidently intended for regular publication.
>>> dlevere at ILSTU.EDU wrote:
>>>> Dear Wolfgang,
>>>> It seems to me that work that doesn't quite fit an established
>>>> print journal or monograph series ought either to be submitted to
>>>> an electronic journal or simply posted on one's webpage with a
>>>> notice to the relevant list, at least for senior scholars such as
>>>> yourself.
>>>> Most of the people who would read and benefit from your research
>>>> report are readers of this list and Funknet, and some on
>>>> LinguistList who don't read these two lists. In fact, by making
>>>> your work available to your colleagues by this announcement and
>>>> your webpage, you have probably already ensured that your paper
>>>> will be read by more people than most print outlets.
>>>> I look forward to reading the work from your website.
>>>> Others might have different opinions about publication, of course.
>>>> But that is my view.
>>>> Dan
>>>> Quoting Wolfgang Schulze <W.Schulze at LRZ.UNI-MUENCHEN.DE>:
>>>>> Dear friends and colleagues
>>>>> please allow me making a perhaps somewhat unusual post. But maybe you
>>>>> can help me or give me some advise. I have produced an admittedly
>>>>> lengthy paper on the *grammaticalization of antipassives* in terms of
>>>>> split aspects systems, dealing mainly with Sumerian, Kartvelian, and
>>>>> Proto-Indo-European, but including data from other languages, too. You
>>>>> can download the first draft (attention: not yet proof-read by an
>>>>> native speaker of English!) from
>>>>> . My problem is that
>>>>> I really don't know what to do with this paper. It is too long for
>>>>> submission to a journal (79 pages), and too short for producing a
>>>>> (slender) monography. Any suggestions (if ever you can imagine that
>>>>> the
>>>>> contents are of relevance for our community)? In addition, I would be
>>>>> happy to receive critics and other comments all of which would
>>>>> undoubtedly help to improve the quality of the analyses.
>>>>> Many thanks in advance and best wishes,
>>>>> Wolfgang
>>>>> --
>>>>> --
>>>>> *Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Schulze *
>>> --
>>> Martin Haspelmath (haspelmath at
>>> Max-Planck-Institut fuer evolutionaere Anthropologie, Deutscher Platz 6
>>> D-04103 Leipzig      Tel. (MPI) +49-341-3550 307, (priv.) +49-341-980
>>> 1616
>> --------------------------------------------------------------
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