25.3408, Calls: General Linguistics/Iceland

The LINGUIST List linguist at linguistlist.org
Fri Aug 29 16:58:18 UTC 2014

LINGUIST List: Vol-25-3408. Fri Aug 29 2014. ISSN: 1069 - 4875.

Subject: 25.3408, Calls: General Linguistics/Iceland

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Date: Fri, 29 Aug 2014 12:58:10
From: Anton Ingason [ingason at ling.upenn.edu]
Subject: 2nd Workshop on Formal Ways of Analyzing Variation

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Full Title: 2nd Workshop on Formal Ways of Analyzing Variation 
Short Title: FWAV2 

Date: 28-May-2015 - 28-May-2015
Location: Reykjavik, Iceland 
Contact Person: Anton Ingason
Meeting Email: ingason at ling.upenn.edu
Web Site: http://conference.hi.is/digs17/workshops/ 

Linguistic Field(s): General Linguistics 

Call Deadline: 30-Nov-2014 

Meeting Description:

The second workshop on Formal Ways of Analyzing Variation, FWAV2, will be held at the University of Iceland on May 28, 2015, and will be co-located with DiGS 17 (May 29-31). The meeting aims to follow up on the success of FWAV1 which was held in Reykjavík in 2012.

The FWAV workshop is a venue for research that relates linguistic variation and formal analysis. FWAV is not restricted to specific domains such as syntax or phonology. The general theme of the meeting is described below. This year, FWAV will be co-located with DiGS 17 and on this occasion we hope some of the presentations at FWAV will make use of the various historical treebanks that are familiar to many researchers in diachronic syntax.

Labov’s pioneering study on contraction and deletion of the copula in African American Vernacular English (1969) and subsequent work on linguistic variation and change has drawn substantial attention to the relationship between formal analysis and quantitative usage patterns. Recently available evidence shows that discrete acceptability judgments in syntax, drawn from a large sample of speakers, also manifest regular quantitative patterns (see e.g. Thráinsson et al. 2013 and references cited there).

Call for Papers:


(1) What do formal analyses of variation predict to be possible and impossible?

The workshop aims to investigate the empirical content of analyses of speaker variation. Representative research questions include, but are not limited to:

a. What are the limits of variation?
b. Do our analyses provide unifying accounts for apparently disparate clusters of linguistic properties?
c. How does the child analyze a heterogeneous pool of primary linguistic data?
d. What types of diachronic trajectories are consequences of language acquisition under variation?
e. Is the statistical distribution of variation constrained by grammatical factors?
f. How do we make the best use of statistical tools for formal linguistic analysis?

(2) What does the variation attach to?

We also ask about the relationship between the linguistic machinery and the mechanisms that are responsible for how speakers alternate between functionally equivalent variants. Representative questions include:
a. Where does the variation come from and how can we distinguish the formal models empirically?
b. How do we know which type of mechanism is responsible for which part of language usage?
c. How does a formal analysis of variation handle different domains of language and the interfaces between them?

See the website for a longer version of this description.


Submissions for FWAV 2 will use the same EasyChair setup as DiGS 17. It should be indicated if the submission is intended for FWAV rather than DiGS.

We invite abstract submissions for 20-minute oral presentations, to be followed by discussions. 

Abstracts should be anonymous and no longer than two pages, including references and examples, in 12-point Times New Roman, with margins of at least 2,5 cm/1 inch. Submissions are limited to a maximum of one individual and one joint abstract per author. 

Abstracts are to be submitted in pdf-format via the EasyChair system at:


For further information, including instructions on how to use the EasyChair submission system, see the conference website.

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