Durian and Gordon’s 2011 NWAV 40 Presentation Now Available

Here is a posting for the final of the NWAV 40 presentation slide shows that we will be posted to the site. This one is the overview presentation by Durian and Gordon for the whole “New Ways of Analyzing Vowel Shifts” double panel. Sticking with the theme, the presentation itself actually introduces some new material presenting new ways of looking at vowel shifts, rather than simply being an overview per se.

This show presents what we believe to be the first reference to “Third Dialect Shift” as a proper term for defining the vowel shift found in recent studies in Canada, the US Midland, and the US West, where LOT backs (and variably raises), TRAP backs, and DRESS also backs. The backing of LOT is often accompanied by merger with THOUGHT, but not always. This term for the Shift also appears in written form outside of this presentation in Durian’s forthcoming dissertation “A New Perspective on Vowel Variation throughout the 20th Century in Columbus, OH,” to be made available in December, 2012.

The slide show can be found here–http://www.ling.osu.edu/~ddurian/NWAV40/Durian_Gordon_NWAV40.pdf


Making sense of shifty changes: The role of phonetic analogy in vowel shifts (Durian and Joseph, 2011)

Here is a link to “Making Sense of Shifty Changes: The Role of Phonetic Analogy in Vowel Shifts” by David Durian and Brian D. Joseph, the first of several presentations I am posting here from the “New Perspectives on Vowel Shifting” panels held at NWAV 40. Note–This version is an updated and somewhat more detailed version that what we actually presented in person at NWAV 40.

Here is our abstract:

The idea that diachronic development and cross-generational incrementation of vowel shifts
proceed via processes of rule extension/rule generalization has a long history (King, 1969;
Labov, 1972/1994/2010). Recently, linguists have questioned whether the generalization process
involved might better be classified as analogical, since parallel shifts usually develop and
progress in real world observation of actual speakers’ shifting vowel systems (Gordon, 2001;
Boberg, 2005; Durian, 2009).

Accordingly, we explore here whether this generalization process in parallel shifts is rule
extension/generalization or analogy, specifically phonetic analogy (Schuchardt, 1885;
Vennemann, 1972). Conceptually, phonetic analogy is a reasonable alternative to “extension”,
since “extension” is essentially an analogical likening of, say, a mid vowel to a high vowel.
As the empirical basis for our discussion, we present results of a quantitative analysis of two
parallel shifts (fronting of /uw-ow/; backing of /ae-E-I/) found among Columbus speakers. We
offer real and apparent time change trends from the vowel systems of 62 speakers, born 1896-
1990 and evenly representing social class (middle/working), sex, and generational cohort.
Our analysis shows speakers making use of phonetic analogy during parallel shift development/

This process involves three steps, during which linguistic relationships, such as contrasts between
combinations of place and voicing features which occur as contrastive sets, function as either “models” or “clones”: a) initial extension of a “model” set of relationships to another “clone” set; b) refinement of the modeled set relationship applied to the clone set; c) increasingly “generic” generalization of the refined clone set relationship affecting additional clone iterations.

Data from both parallel Columbus shifts exemplifies how each step occurs. Further, we explore application of this model to other vowel shifts, e.g. the Canadian and Northern Cities chain shifts. Ultimately, we conclude phonetic analogy is the best way to classify the overall generalization process in vowel shift development/incrementation, rather than rule extension/generalization.

A must read for folks interested in the meta-history of Historical Linguistics

This chapter, from the History of the Language Sciences (Vol 3) by Robert Murray, is a definite “must read” for folks interested in the meta-history of research and theory trends in the area of Historical Linguistics. It provides a concise discussion of which research and theory trends that began in the 18th and 19th Centuries were carried over into the Structuralist (and Post-Structuralist) eras, and more importantly, interesting postulations on why some were carried over but others weren’t. (For those interested in one of the continuing sub-themes of this site–work focused on phonetic and phonological analogy–there is also some discussion of Schuchardt’s take on analogy embedded in the discussion.)

Murray, Robert W. 2006. Historical Linguistics in the second half of the 20th Century: The place of Historical Linguistics in the age of Structuralism. In Sylvain Auroux, E.F.K. Koerner, Hans-Josef Niederehe, and Kees Versteegh (Eds.), History of the Language Sciences, volume 3. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter. pp. 2430-2445. http://books.google.com/books?id=oJDtIToTmcAC&pg=PA2430&dq=The+place+of+historical+linguistics+in+the+age+of+structuralism&hl=en&ei=7arMTbWYJ-HW0QHv1JWwBA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CDEQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=The%20place%20of%20historical%20linguistics%20in%20the%20age%20of%20structuralism&f=false

This one time in 1988 when Kiparsky talked about phonological anology…

Earlier on the blog, I posted several articles dealing with phonetic analogy that also discussed how it is similar to and different from conceptual analogy. Here, in Kiparsky’s (1988) “Phonological change,” we get K’s take on phonetic analogy as well as what he dubs phonological analogy. Another interesting read for those wishing to consider alternate views on analogy as a language change process…

Kiparsky, Paul. 1988. Phonological change. In Newmeyer, Frederick (Ed.), Linguistics: The Cambridge Survey. Volume I-Linguistic theory: Foundations. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 363-415. http://www.ling.osu.edu/~ddurian/AWAC/Kiparsky_1988.pdf

Schuchardt’s “Against the Neogrammarians”, both in the original German and translated into English…

Following up on the Vennemann “Phonetic analogy and conceptual analogy” and “Getting to know Schuchardt” posts, I now present Schuchardt’s own take on “phonetic analogy and conceptual analogy” in his own words. It is presented below both in the original German and in an English translation (made by Venneman and Wilbur in 1972).

Schuchardt, Hugo. 1885. Uber die Lautesetze: Gegen die Junggrammatiker. Berlin: Oppenheim. (Reprinted and translated as On Sound Laws: Against the Neogrammarians in Vennemann, Theo, and Terence H. Wilbur (Eds.), Schuchardt, the Neogrammarians, and the Transformational Theory of phonological change: Four essays. Frankfort, Athenaum.)

English: http://www.ling.osu.edu/~ddurian/AWAC/Schuchardt_1885.pdf

German: http://www.ling.osu.edu/~ddurian/AWAC/Schuchardt_orig_1885.pdf

Getting to know Hugo Schuchardt (part 1)

This article, by John Fought, provides a nice summary explanation of why sociolinguists in 2010 should get to know, and dig, the work of Hugo Schuchardt (b. 1842-d. 1927).

Fought, John. 1982. The reinvention of Hugo Schuchardt. Language in Society, 11.3: 419-436. http://www.jstor.org/pss/4167331

See also:

Wikipedia listing for Hugo Schuchardt http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hugo_Schuchardt

Hugo Schuchardt Archive (Translated) http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=de&u=http://schuchardt.uni-graz.at/&ei=E0x8TI3yIZSRnweB1b2TCw&sa=X&oi=translate&ct=result&resnum=2&sqi=2&ved=0CCwQ7gEwAQ&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dhugo%2Bschuchardt%26hl%3Den%26prmd%3Dio

Analogy, take 4: Schuchardt and Vennemann’s phonetic analogy and conceptual analogy

Following on from Joseph’s (to appear) discussion, as well as earlier postings concerning analogy and sound change (Take One, Two, and Three), here is a 4th take on the role of analogy in sound change. This time around, it’s Theo Vennemann building on concepts originally introduced by Hugo Schuchardt (1885): phonetic analogy and conceptual analogy.

As I mentioned earlier, my dissertation will investigate the possible role analogy plays in processes such as parallel shifts. As discussed by Joseph (to appear), my vision of the role analogy plays in the process, as initially demonstrated in Durian (2009),  is very much like the one discussed by Vennemann in his  article “Phonetic analogy and conceptual analogy” from 1972. Given the connection, I have included Vennemann’s discussion here.

Vennemann, Theo. 1972b. Phonetic analogy and conceptual analogy. In Vennemann, Theo, and Terence H. Wilbur (Eds.), Schuchardt, the Neogrammarians, and the Transformational Theory of phonological change: Four essays. Frankfort, Athenaum. p. 181-204. http://ling.osu.edu/~ddurian/AWAC/vennemann 1972b.pdf

See also:

Durian, David. 2009. Purely a chain shift? The “Canadian Shift” in the US Midland. Paper presented at NWAV 38, Ottawa, Canada. http://www.ling.osu.edu/~ddurian/CLCC/Presentations.html

Schuchardt, Hugo. 1885. Uber die Lautesetze: Gegen die Junggrammatiker. Berlin: Oppenheim. (Reprinted and translated as On Sound Laws: Against the Neogrammarians in Vennemann, Theo, and Terence H. Wilbur (Eds.), Schuchardt, the Neogrammarians, and the Transformational Theory of phonological change: Four essays. Frankfort, Athenaum.) http://www.ling.osu.edu/~ddurian/AWAC/Schuchardt_1885.pdf

Strange bedfellows or natural friends? Sociolinguistics and historical linguistics

Here’s a quite interesting and quite recent “thought piece” by Brian Joseph, one which I think all readers of this blog should give a serious read and consideration. And also hopefully one readers will choose to comment on…

Why you ask? Because it raises  a number of thought provoking questions and offers an intriguing series of thoughts on a number of issues that tend to be of concern to sociolinguists who focus on language change which differ from the views we so often take as “a given” in the year 2010 in our field.

As the author himself states: “In what follows, I aim to see what points of similarity and difference there are between these two commonly paired concerns [sociolinguistics and historical linguistics]– note the very terms “socio-historical linguistics” / “historical sociolinguistics”, after all – with an ultimate goal of determining if the coupling of the two is, as the title suggests, the result of joint membership in a natural class or is instead a forced marriage.

In the course of so doing, I re-examine and to some extent debunk, or at least attempt to debunk, a number of concepts that both historical linguistics and sociolinguistics hold dear. In many instances, I pose questions about notions and practices without necessarily offering answers. In the spirit of Socrates’ adage about the unexamined life, my hope is that asking the right questions is helpful even if clear answers are not offered.

Some of what follows may seem obvious and maybe even trivial to the intended audience of sociolinguists, historical linguists, and social historians, but my intent is in part to call attention here to some shortcuts that practicing socio-historical linguists routinely use. In this way, we can be sure that we are aware of what we are doing when we employ them. I see two important reasons for doing this. First, it is sometimes the case that practitioners can be deluded or deceived in the worst case or just even distracted by their own terminology and their own practices, so that raising questions can be a way of heightening awareness. Second, there is always a risk that others outside our subfield might adopt (and then alter or misconstrue) our practices without fully understanding why we do what we do, and being explicit about the practices can thus be a safeguard against that.”

Having hopefully interested you in wanting to read more, I present a link to the entirety of Joseph’s piece, below…

Joseph, Brian D. To appear (2011). Historical linguistics and sociolinguistics: Strange bedfellows or natural friends? In Langer, Nils, Steffan Davies, and Wim Vandenbussche (Eds.), Language and history, linguistics and historiography. Proceedings from the 3rd Summer School in Historical Sociolinguistics, as Organized by the Historical Sociolinguistics Network (HiSoN) with the support of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, University of Adger and the University of Bristol.


Analogy: A third take

This time round I have selected a reading that follows up on the previous two posts (Wagner; Hock) regarding analogy. In this third post, we find a more general discussion of analogy, this time focused on analogy as cognition process. Although not explicitly focused on sound change like the earlier posts, I believe Anttila raises a number of relevant points to consider, regardless.

Anttila, Raimo. 2003. Analogy: The warp and woof of cognition. In Joseph, Brian D., and Richard D. Janda (Eds.), The handbook of historical linguistics. Oxley: Blackwell. pp. 425-440.


Analogy and sound change: A second look

Following up on the “Analogy and sound change: A first look” posting, here is a second look, this time from Hans Hock, via a reading taken from the Handbook of Historical Linguistics.

Hock, Hans. 2003. Analogical change. In Joseph, Brian D., and Richard D. Janda (Eds.), The handbook of historical linguistics. Oxford: Blackwell.


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