[Lingtyp] UPDATED Call for papers: Special issue of Phonology on grammatical tone

Laura McPherson laura.emcpherson at gmail.com
Thu Jul 23 17:49:13 UTC 2020

***Apologies for cross-posting***

(Update on previous email, we had to delay the submission dates. New
information is below)

*Phonology *Thematic Issue:

‘Theoretical approaches to grammatical tone’

*DEADLINE EXTENSION: Friday, May 21st, 2021*

Projected to appear as one of the first issues of Phonology 39 (2022)

*NB: Due to the COVID-19 crisis, the editors have decided to extend the
deadline for submission to the Phonology thematic issue on “theoretical
approaches to grammatical tone” to Friday, May 21st, 2021.*

Tone is distinct from other phonological phenomena both qualitatively and
quantitatively, and has been instrumental in shaping phonological theory in
many ways. However, the contributions to current linguistic theory of
‘grammatical tone’ – a type of nonconcatenative morphology where a morpheme
is expressed in part by tonal changes and operations (e.g. tone addition,
deletion, replacement, spreading, shifting, assimilation, dissimilation,
etc.) – have been less apparent. The goal of this thematic issue is to
contribute to filling this gap, and to facilitate advances in our
understanding of grammatical tone and (morpho)phonological theory in tandem.

Grammatical tone demonstrates a unique configuration of properties above
and beyond special features of tone more generally, including postlexical
cyclicity effects, non-local relations on the tonal tier, counting effects
in floating tone assignment, tone-based templatic effects in great
regularity across Africa (surpassing segmental templates à la Semitic and
Yokuts), among many others. Given that half the world’s languages are tonal
– with a huge number in some of the least documented areas – we suspect
phonological theory still has a huge amount to gain by specifically
engaging with grammatical tone.

Submissions are invited which directly focus on grammatical tone and
phonological theory. We seek to include several tone-system types (e.g.
from ‘canonical’ tone systems like Vietnamese to ‘pitch-accent systems’
like Serbian or Japanese). Issues include (but are not limited to) the

   - the representation of grammatical tone, and the question of
   grammatical tone allomorphy;
   - interactions between grammatical tone and the phonological grammar,
   e.g. the role of phonological markedness, blocking effects, segmental
   - interactions between grammatical tone and other prosodic units, e.g.
   lexical tone, intonation/boundary tones, other grammatical tones,
   stress/prominence marking;
   - the derivation of grammatical tone, e.g. non-categorical application
   of grammatical tone, input–output vs. output–output relations, cyclic
   effects, derived environment effects;
   - types of (non-)locality effects with grammatical tone, defined either
   linearly or hierarchically;
   - interface with phonetics, e.g. incomplete neutralisation effects,
   exemplar models;
   - interface with morphosyntax, e.g. phonology-free syntax, issues of
   modularity in grammar;
   - prosodic constituency, e.g. (mis)alignment between the domains of
   grammatical tone and other prosodic constituents in the prosodic hierarchy,
   kinds of attested nonisomorphy;
   - the computational properties of grammatical tone.

This thematic issue, which will be edited by Nicholas Rolle (Princeton
University), Florian Lionnet (Princeton University) and Laura McPherson
(Dartmouth College), is open to all potential contributors, and is
projected to appear as one of the first issues of Phonology 39 (2022).

*The deadline for submissions is Friday, May 21st, 2021.*

General information on the submission of manuscripts can be found in
previous issues of the journal, or on the Phonology website (

For this issue, submissions should be sent in PDF format to
nrolle at princeton.edu, flionnet at princeton.edu,
laura.e.mcpherson at dartmouth.edu, c.j.ewen at hum.leidenuniv.nl. An abstract
(no longer than 150 words) should be included. Please begin the heading
with ‘Phonology thematic issue’.

Preference will be given to papers which will occupy no more than 20
printed pages in the journal (around 8000 words). Submissions will be read
by at least two reviewers and by the editors of the thematic issue.


Laura McPherson

Associate Professor of Linguistics

Dartmouth College
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