In addition to the readings from the course's two textbooks, there were also additional readings and audio / video material that supplemented the course topics. All of these are featured in the table below.
What's it all about?
Branches of linguistics.
Language acquisition: what's innate, what's learned?
|[O'Grady] Chapter 1, pp. 1–113.|
The notion "lexicon"
No word or morpheme boundaries in the speech signal
Affixes: prefixes, suffixes
The rule "Merge"
How structure interacts with sound and with meaning
Affixes: reduplication, infixes
Solving morphology problems
Derivational vs. inflectional morphology
[O'Grady] Chapter 4, pp. 115–46.
Saffran, Jenny R., Richard N. Aslin, et al. "Statistical Learning by 8-Month-Old Infants." Science 274, no. 5294 (1996): 1926–8.
A sample stimulus (AIFF) from the experiment described in the article above.
|Phonetics (Sounds of Speech: Production and Perception)|
International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA)
Articulatory phonetics / distinctive features
Consonants: place, manner, aspiration, nasality
Articulatory phonetics (cont.)
Acoustic phonetics, categorical perception
The McGurk effect
Finish phonetics, start phonology
|[O'Grady] Chapter 2, pp. 15–55. |
Eimas, Peter D., Einar R. Siqueland, et al. "Speech Perception in Infants." Science 171, no. 3968 (1971): 303–6.
Watch both of the following video clips three ways: eyes open, volume up; eyes closed, volume up; eyes open, volume down.
hmcnally. "The McGurk effect." July 3, 2006. YouTube. Accessed February 14, 2013. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aFPtc8BVdJk
"The McGurk Effect," demonstrated by Prof. Patricia Kuhl.
|Phonology (Sounds of Speech: Their Grammar)|
Phonology vs. phonetics
Phoneme and allophone
How to determine the phonemes of a language
|[O'Grady] Chapter 3, pp. 59–106.|
Writing systems as a technology for representing speech
Types of systems: pictographic, syllabary, alphabet
Origins of the Roman alphabet
Phonemic vs. phonetic alphabetic writing systems
|[O'Grady] Chapter 16, pp. 545–67.|
|Syntax (Sentence Structure)|
Syntactic categories (noun, verb, etc.)
Subcategorization in syntax
Chomsky's Locality Condition on subcategorization
The notion "head"
Complements and adjuncts
Head-initial vs. head-final languages
Movement as "internal merge"
Patterns of pronunciation (overt, covert, split)
The notion "parameter"
Movement and word-order variation
A language universal: the Final-over-Final Constraint (FOFC)
[O'Grady] Chapter 5, pp. 155–98.
All chapters in [Baker].
|Acquisition of Syntax|
Stages of acquisition
Learning vs. innateness vs. maturation
[O'Grady] Chapter 11, pp. 351–85.
Manual babbling by hearing child exposed to sign language.
"Berko's Wug Experiment." (MOV - 2.4MB) with a 3 year-old child.
"What Do You Think What She Said?" (MOV - 5.4MB) Cognitive Neuroscience of Language Laboratory, University of Maryland.
"Building the Morphological Puzzle: a Claim for Continuity." (MOV - 15.7MB) Cognitive Neuroscience of Language Laboratory, Department of Linguistics, University of Maryland.
|Semantics (Grammar of Meaning) / Semantics and Pragmatics |
Pronouns and binding
Negative polarity items
|[O'Grady] Chapter 6, pp. 203–40, but focus on 221–32.|
|Controversies, Myths and Crazy Rumors about Language|
Selected from such issues as...
Does the language of the Pirahã disprove theories about language?
Why did Stalin write articles about linguistics?
What does teaching children to read have to do with right-wing vs. left-wing politics?
How many words for snow does Eskimo have? Should we care?
Colapinto, John. "The Interpreter." The New Yorker, April 2007, 118–37.
Everett, Daniel L. "Cultural Constraints on Grammar and Cognition in Pirahã: Another Look at the Design Features of Human Language." (PDF) Current Anthropology 46, no. 4 (2005): 621–46.
A reply to the Everett article:
Nevins, Andrew Ira, David Pesetsky, et al. "Pirahã Exceptionality: a Reassessment." June 2009.
Medvedev, Roy. "Stalin and Linguistics: An Episode from the History of Soviet Science." Chapter 10 in The Unknown Stalin: His Life, Death, and Legacy. Written by Roy Medvedev and Zhores Medvedev. Translated by Ellen Dahrendorf. The Overlook Press, 2005. ISBN: 9781585676446.
Stalin, Joseph V. Marxism and Problems of Linguistics. Wildside Press, 2008. ISBN: 9781434463760. [Preview with Google Books]
Pullum, Geoffrey K. Chapter 19 in The Great Eskimo Vocabulary Hoax and Other Irreverent Essays on the Study of Language. University of Chicago Press, 1991. ISBN: 9780226685342. [Preview with Google Books]
Synchronic vs. diachronic linguistics
Internalist vs. externalist views of change
Pidgins, Creoles, Creolization
The Indo-European language family: language and culture
Linguistics and the Romantic movement
History of English
|[O'Grady] Chapter 7, pp. 245–91. |
Rosenfelder, Mark. "How Likely Are Chance Resemblances Between Languages?" zomptist.com, 2002.
|Dialects: Facts and Controversies|
What is a dialect?
The politics of languages and dialects
Dialects of North American English
The "Ebonics" controversy
[O'Grady] Chapter 14, pp. 485–526.
Culturize. "The Wire–How To Play Chess." October 2, 2010. YouTube. Accessed February 19, 2013. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0mxz2-AQ64 (Listen for null copula and invariant be.)
SHNKArchives. "I Am Canadian: The Rant." September 13, 2012. YouTube. Accessed February 19, 2013. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WMxGVfk09lU
Bill Cosby's address at the NAACP on the 50th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education, May 17, 2004, americanrhetoric.com
Pound Cake speech, wikipedia.org.
Julie Corbett. "Shark Attacked Newfoundland NTV News." January 24, 2011. YouTube. Accessed February 19, 2013. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=siG7HBBY1MQ (Wait for the sound-bite interviews with the locals.)
Interview with William Labov, All Things Considered, npr.org, 2006.
Interview with John McCarthy, New England Public Radio, 2004.