The Multidimensional Organization of Speech: Syntactic and Prosodic Structure

Date: May 7, 2021

Time: 09:00

Location: PC Zoom Room

Speakers: Marianne Mithun (UCSB)

Much of our understanding of linguistic structure was necessarily first built up on the basis of isolated sentences, either constructed by analysts or speakers consulting their intuitions, or from written documents. The availability of corpora of unscripted speech is now allowing us to see what speakers actually do, opening up vast new areas for exploration. Some of the advantages described here are the access to prosody and context. The question addressed is how closely traditional syntactic structures, particularly constituent structures, are matched by prosodic structures. Points are illustrated with corpus material from Mohawk, a language indigenous to the North American Northeast.