Noguchi Defense

Yuya Noguchi successfully defended his doctoral dissertation titled Asymmetries, Covert Wh-Movement, and Nominality in Japanese Wh-Questions on February 5th.

Congratulations, Yuya!

Yuya during the defense:


Dr. Noguchi with his committee after the successful defense:


Dr. Noguchi cutting his well earned cake:


UConn Linguists at NELS

The 54th Annual Meeting of the North East Linguistics Society is taking place 26-27th of January, at MIT (, and UConn Linguistics will be represented with an invited talk by:
  • Lyn Tieu (PhD 2013, now at University of Toronto). Theories of linguistic inferences: What experiments can tell us

… and poster presentations by…

    • Pravaal Yadav. Patterns and conditions on cross-clausal agreement in Hindi-Urdu
    • Ka-Fai Yip & Xuetong Yuan. Agreement in imperative clauses: evidence from object resumptive pronouns in Mandarin Chinese

    UConn Linguists at the LSA Annual Meeting

    The 2024 edition of the Annual Meeting of the Linguistic Society of America took place January 4th-7th in New York City. The event also commemorated the centennial of the LSA. UConn linguistics was well represented at the conference with talks by:

    • Shengyun Gu. Interaction between iconicity and weak drop in Shanghai Sign Language
    • Diane Brentari, Kathryn Montemurro, Susan Goldin-Meadow, Ann Senghas, Marie Coppola. The effects of animacy on the creation of verb agreement: Clues from Lengua de Señas Nicaragüense
    • Shengyun Gu, Diane Lillo-Martin, Deborah Chen Pichler (PhD 2001, now at Gallaudet University), Elaine Gale. Early Development in ASL Phonology: A Longitudinal Study of Deaf Children with Hearing Parents

    … a poster presentations by:

    • Aida Talić (PhD 2017, now at University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign). You don’t need a definite article to have a DP: A view from Telugu domain of N and A

    … and a talk in the workshop on “Advances in the study of signed language phonological change”:

    • Harry Van der Hulst . Why do sign languages lack allomorphy rules? 

    Magdalena Kaufmann | Book chapter on Imperative clauses

    Magdalena Kaufmann‘s chapter “Imperative clauses” has been published as part of the book Wh-exclamatives, Imperatives and Wh-questions: Issues on Brazilian Portuguese (De Gruyter Mouton 2024, edited by Simone Guesser, Ani Marchesan and Paulo Medeiros Junior).

    Abstract: This chapter introduces imperatives as the class of sentential form types in natural languages that are prototypically associated with the speech act of ordering. I show that imperatives serve for a crosslinguistically stable, but in itself diverse range of speech acts, which makes it challenging to find a common conventional core meaning that would explain the pattern. I discuss specific issues relating to the absence of intuitively accessible truth-values and restrictions on embedding. I then turn to a brief overview of syntactic assumptions about imperatives in general, before considering the status of grammatical categories like subject marking, tense and aspect, and negation in imperative clauses in more detail. Finally, I consider instances of imperative marking as occurring in embedded positions, as well as form types appearing in similar and typically smaller ranges of related functions.


    Magdalena Kaufmann | Croatian Journal of Philosophy

    Magdalena Kaufmann‘s paper “From Coherence Relations to the Grammar of Pronouns and Tense” has just appeared in Vol. 23, No. 69 of the Croatian Journal of Philosophy.

    Abstract: Stojnić (2021) argues that the content of linguistic utterances is determined by the rules of natural language grammar more stringently than what is generally assumed. She proposes specifically that coherence relations are encoded by the linguistic structures and determine what individuals count as most prominent, thereby serving as the referents of free (“demonstrative”) pronouns. In this paper, I take a close look at the empirical evidence from English and Serbian that she offers in support of this position. Considering these data points in connection with additional linguistic data (also from German and Japanese), I argue that there is no compelling evidence for the assumption that coherence relations directly determine the resolution of pronouns. Instead, grammatical restrictions imposed by different types of pronouns and tenses have a larger impact on the meaning conventionally expressed by complex utterances than what is generally assumed in the literature on coherence relations.

    UConn linguistics at FDSL

    The 16th conference on the Formal description of Slavic languages (FDSL16) took place November 29th-December 1st at the University of Graz. UConn linguistics was represented at the conference with talks by:

    • Arthur Stepanov (PhD 2001, now at University of Nova Gorica). Exploring feature assignment in real time: The case of Russian numeral phrases
    • Magdalena Kaufmann and Neda Todorović (2016, now at University of Connecticut & Reed College). The remote and the impossible in Serbian
    • Sara Andreeta, Matic Pavlič, Penka Stateva (PhD 2002, now at University of Nova Gorica), and Artur Stepanov. Sentence comprehension in minority languages: The Slovenian Community in Italy
    • Jakob Lenardič (visiting scholar Fall 2017, now at Institute of Contemporary History, Slovenia). Slavic Reflexive Impersonals: Passivisation and Unaccusativity
    • Krzysztof Migdalski (post-doc 2006-2008, now at University of Wrocław). On the non-directionality of language change – a case of functional elements in Slavic
    • Svitlana Antonyuk (post-doc 2018-19, now at University of Graz). A quantification-based approach to the deduction of phases in (East) Slavic

    … and an invited talk by:

    • Željko Bošković. Spelling-out phases (Workshop on Information Structure, Prosody and Phase Theory in Slavic)

    Gu Defense

    Shengyun Gu successfully defended her doctoral dissertation titled Bimanual coordination: The non-dominant hand in Shanghai Sign Language on Friday October 27th.

    Congratulations, Shengyun!

    Shengyun during the defense:

    Dr. Gu with her committee after the successful defense:


    Dr. Gu cutting her well earned cake:

    UConn Linguistics at BUCLD

    The 48th Annual Boston University Conference on Language Development (BUCLD48) took place on 2nd-5th November 2023. UConn linguistics was represented at the conference with talks by:

    • Roeland Hancock, Sahil Luthra and William Snyder. Neuroanatomical Support for the Maturational Hypothesis of Subject-Experiencer Passives
    • Helen Koulidobrova (PhD 2012, now at Central Connecticut University) and Gabriel Martinez Vera (PhD 2020, now at Newcastle University). Not a matter of a degree: ASL signing children and acquisition of gradability

    … and posters by:

    • Deborah Chen Pichler (PhD 2001, now at Gallaudet University), Mary Cecilia Conte, Patrice Creamer, Martin Dale-Hench, Elaine Gale, Linghui Gan, Corina Goodwin, Shengyun Gu, Kaj Kraus, Chui-Yi Margaret Lee, Diane Lillo-Martin, Jeffrey Palmer, Bettie Petersen and Meghan Shaw. Profile of a Family’s Bimodal Bilingual Development
    • Adina Camelia Bleotu, Andreea Nicolae, Anton Benz, Gabriela Bilbiie, Mara Panaitescu, Monica Casa and Lyn Tieu (PhD 2013, now at University of Toronto). On the role of alternatives and QUD in implicatures with disjunction in child Romanian
    • Shuyan Wang (PhD 2022, now at Rutgers University). Children’s delay in scalar implicatures: Evidence for processing account
    • Ting Xu (PhD 2016, now at Tsinghua University), Lyn Tieu and Stella Christie. Mandarin-acquiring children’s interpretation of presuppositional you ‘again’