Recently published / book reviewing for LT

Plank frans.plank at UNI-KONSTANZ.DE
Mon Dec 17 13:20:49 UTC 2012

Recently Published and of Typological Interest / xii 2012


New publications of potential typological interest are periodically advertised on the lingtyp list.  Apart from directly commissioning reviews, LT solicits offers from lingtypists to review books – those listed here or whichever others you’d like to add on your own understanding of the attribute “typologically relevant”.  (And do construe its scope liberally!)  For purposes of book reviewing in LT, what matters is that REVIEWS are done from a distinctively typological angle, from whatever angles the books reviewed are done.  Prospective reviewers so intentioned please get in touch.


Drop me a line with bibliographical particulars if you want to make sure your own relevant publications will be included in the next listing.  The most effective indication of the existence of a new relevant book is the receipt of a review copy;  do remind your publisher to send one to:




Universität Konstanz,

78457 Konstanz, Germany.


Regrettably, many previously listed titles have remained unreviewed in LT.  However, typological publications can have long shelf-lives, and you’re welcome to make your pick and review now what has been listed before and is not past the sell-by date. 


Do feel free to also offer to review grammars for LT (again, from a distinctively typological angle).  Some are included in our listings here, but eventually THE GRAMMAR WATCH on the ALT website should pick up again where we left off a while ago.   


Frans Plank

frans.plank at



Ansaldo, Umberto (ed.). 2012. Pidgins and creoles in Asia. Amsterdam: Benjamins.

[= Journal of Pidgin and Creole Languages 25(1), 2010.]


Bobaljik, Jonathan D. 2012. Universals in comparative morphology: Suppletion, superlatives, and the structure of words. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

[This groundbreaking study of the morphology of comparison yields a surprising result: that even in suppletion (the wholesale replacement of one stem by a phonologically unrelated stem, as in good-better-best) there emerge strikingly robust patterns, virtually exceptionless generalizations across languages. Jonathan David Bobaljik describes the systematicity in suppletion, and argues that at least five generalizations are solid contenders for the status of linguistic universals. The major topics discussed include suppletion, comparative and superlative formation, deadjectival verbs, and lexical decomposition. Bobaljik’s primary focus is on morphological theory, but his argument also aims to integrate evidence from a variety of subfields into a coherent whole.
In the course of his analysis, Bobaljik argues that the assumptions needed bear on choices among theoretical frameworks and that the framework of Distributed Morphology has the right architecture to support the account. In addition to the theoretical implications of the generalizations, Bobaljik suggests that the striking patterns of regularity in what otherwise appears to be the most irregular of linguistic domains provide compelling evidence for Universal Grammar. [Publishers]]


Bowern, Claire Louise. 2012. A grammar of Bardi. Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton.


Brown, Dunstan, Marina Chumakina, & Greville G. Corbett (eds.). 2012. Canonical morphology and syntax. Oxford: Oxford University Press.


Comrie, Bernard & Zarina Estrada-Fernández (eds.). 2012. Relative clauses in languages of the Americas: A typological overview. Amsterdam: Benjamins.


Corbett, Greville G. 2012. Features. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


Cutler, Ann. 2012. Native listening: Language experience and the recognition of spoken words. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

[Understanding speech in our native tongue seems natural and effortless; listening to speech in a nonnative language is a different experience. In this book, Anne Cutler argues that listening to speech is a process of native listening because so much of it is exquisitely tailored to the requirements of the native language. Her cross-linguistic study (drawing on experimental work in languages that range from English and Dutch to Chinese and Japanese) documents what is universal and what is language specific in the way we listen to spoken language. 
Cutler describes the formidable range of mental tasks we carry out, all at once, with astonishing speed and accuracy, when we listen. These include evaluating probabilities arising from the structure of the native vocabulary, tracking information to locate the boundaries between words, paying attention to the way the words are pronounced, and assessing not only the sounds of speech but prosodic information that spans sequences of sounds. She describes infant speech perception, the consequences of language-specific specialization for listening to other languages, the flexibility and adaptability of listening (to our native languages), and how language-specificity and universality fit together in our language processing system.  [Publishers]]


Dixon, R. M. W. 2012. Basic Linguistic Theory, vol. 3: Further grammatical topics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.


Etxeberria, Urtzi, Ricardo Etxepare, & Myriam Uribe-Etxebarria (eds.). 2012. Noun phrases and nominalization in Basque: Syntax and semantics. Amsterdam: Benjamins.


Filipović, Luna & Kasia M. Jaszczolt (eds.). 2012.  Space and time in languages and cultures: Linguistic diversity. Amsterdam: Benjamins.


Filipović, Luna & Kasia M. Jaszczolt (eds.). 2012.  Space and time in languages and cultures: Language, culture, and cognition. Amsterdam: Benjamins.


Hendery, Rachel. 2012. Relative clauses in time and space. Amsterdam: Benjamins.


Humboldt, Wilhelm von. 2010/2012. Schriften zur Anthropologie der Basken. Baskische Wortstudien und Grammatik (Wilhelm von Humboldt, Schriften zur Sprachwissenschaft II/1-2). Herausgegeben von Bernhard Hurch, 2 vols. Paderborn: Schöningh.


Kulikov, Leonid. 2012. The Vedic -ya presents: Passives and intransitivity in Old Indo-Aryan.
 Amsterdam: Rodopi.


Lazard, Gilbert. 2012. Études de linguistique générale II: La linguistique pure (Collection linguistique publiée par la Société de linguistique de Paris 98). Leuven & Paris: Peeters.



Massam, Diane (ed.). 2012. Count and mass across languages. Oxford: Oxford University Press.



Narrog, Heiko. 2012. Modality, subjectivity, and semantic change: A cross-linguistic perspective. Oxford: Oxford University Press,



Nolan, Brian. 2012. The structure of Modern Irish: A functional account. Equinox.



Ntelitheos, Dimitrios. 2012. Deriving nominals: A syntactic account of Malagasy nominalizations. Leiden: Brill.

[This book provides a detailed study of nominalizing patterns in Malagasy (Austronesian) and discusses the broader theoretical issues that arise from these patterns. It explores new and original fieldwork data drawn from the largely unexplored domain of Malagasy deverbal nominals. Offering new insights to long-standing puzzles in the derivation of argument-structure, referential, and clausal nominals, the book promotes a single structure-building mechanism, which allows nominalizers to attach at different heights in the clausal spine to derive nominals with different morphosyntactic properties. In addition, it provides a novel analysis of participant nominalizations, showing that they are derived through the same mechanism that derives relative clauses, and thus setting the stage for new and exciting research directions. [Publishers]]



Pawley, Andrew. 2012. Kalam dictionary. Canberra: Australian National University.



Payne, Thomas E. & Doris L. Payne. 2012. A typological grammar of Panare, a Cariban grammar of Venezuela. Leiden: Brill.

[Panare, also known as E'ñapa Woromaipu, is a seriously endangered Cariban language spoken by about 3,500 people in Central Venezuela. A Typological Grammar of Panare by Thomas E. Payne and Doris L. Payne, is a full length linguistic grammar written from a modern functional and typological perspective. The many remarkable characteristics highlighted in the grammar include a 'split-inverse' person marking system, transitivity-sensitive aspect and person-marking verb morphology, object incorporation, relatively nonconfigurational NP structure, both verb-initial and object-initial constituent orders, a complex system of clause chaining, switch reference, and a rich system of evidential and epistemic marking.  [Publishers]]



Spencer, Andrew & Ana R. Luís. 2012. Clitics: An introduction. Cambridge: Cambrige University Press.



Stolz, Thomas, Nicole Nau, & Cornelia Stroh (eds.). 2012. Monosyllables: From phonology to typology (Studia typologica 12). Berlin: Akademie Verlag.

[Dieser Band versammelt zehn Aufsätze, in denen Monosyllaba in verschiedenen Sprachen Asiens, Afrikas und Europas aus unterschiedlichsten Perspektiven betrachtet werden. Einsilber sind in fast allen Sprachen der Welt vertreten. Sprachen wie das Chinesische bevorzugen bekanntermaßen diesen Silbentyp. In anderen, wie z. B. den Bantusprachen, muss ein Wort aus mindestens zwei Silben bestehen. In den europäischen Sprachen rücken Einsilber gerade erst in den Fokus linguistischen Interesses. Die Beiträge dieses Bandes beschäftigen sich sowohl mit phonetischen und phonologischen als auch mit morphologischen und funktionalen Aspekten von Einsilbern. Der Fokus richtet sich auf das Zusammenwirken von Silben- und Wortstruktur, wie auch auf die phonologischen und morphologischen Regeln der Wohlgeformtheit. Es wird sowohl die Entwicklung von Einsilbern in Sprachen, die diesen Silbentyp bevorzugen (ostasiatische Sprachen, aber auch Dänisch), als auch ihre spezielle Rolle als Ausnahmeform innerhalb des Lexikons und bei speziellen Wortformen wie z.B. den Imperativen diskutiert. Methodisch reicht die Spannweite von experimenteller Phonetik, über quantitative Linguistik und Analysen von Einzelsprachen bis hin zu großangelegten typologischen Vergleichen.  [Publishers]]



Tsunoda, Tasaku. 2011. A grammar of Warrongo. Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton.



Velupillai, Viveka. 2012. An introduction to linguistic typology. Amsterdam: Benjamins.

[This clear and accessible introduction to linguistic typology covers all linguistic domains from phonology and morphology over parts-of-speech, the NP and the VP, to simple and complex clauses, pragmatics and language change. There is also a discussion on methodological issues in typology. This textbook is the first introduction that consistently applies the findings of the World Atlas of Language Structures, systematically includes pidgin and creole languages and devotes a section to sign languages in each chapter. All chapters contain numerous illustrative examples and specific feature maps. Keywords and exercises help review the main topics of each chapter. Appendices provide macro data for all the languages cited in the book as well as a list of web sites of typological interest. An extensive glossary gives at-a-glance definitions of the terms used in the book. This introduction is designed for students of courses with a focus on language diversity and typology, as well as typologically-oriented courses in morphology and syntax. The book will also serve as a guide for field linguists.  [Publishers]]



Watson, Janet C. E. 2012. The structure of Mehri (Semitica Viva 52). Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz.

Frans Plank
Universität Konstanz
78457 Konstanz

Tel  +49 (0)7531 88 2656
Fax +49 (0)7531 88 4190
eMail frans.plank at

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