Round Table on Communicative Dynamism

13-14 September, Namur

Following on from a first international Round Table on Communicative Dynamism held in Cardiff in September 2014, the University of Namur is pleased to be able to host a follow-up meeting on 13 and 14 September, focusing on information structure in terms of its categories and its interaction with the semantics and grammar of constructions.

A brief general description is included below, and further information, including the full programme and abstracts, is available on our website at Anyone who would like to attend is kindly requested to register via the web form at no later than 31 August. There is a registration fee of 25 euros covering both days and including coffee breaks and light lunches. Doctoral students who are interested in (theoretical and methodological) questions surrounding information structure are especially welcome; should you supervise any who might be interested, please do pass on the information.

With many thanks and best wishes on behalf of the organizing committee,

Lieven Vandelanotte

About this round table:

This round table focuses on linguistic mechanisms to structure information in clauses and in texts. Information structure is an essential layer of linguistic organization both in its own right and in interaction with morphosyntax and semantics. However, current approaches to information structure suffer from highly divergent terminology and conceptualization.

This round table assumes the theoretical tenets of functional linguists such as Firbas, Halliday, Dik and Sinclair, and has a strong empirical, data-driven orientation. Some papers seek to elucidate the categories of information structure that are still ill understood such as theme-rheme, given-new, and focus. Other papers investigate the interface between information structure, grammar and semantics in specific constructions. The round table is thus of interest to anyone interested in developing replicable analyses of information structure, which identify the components of information units, and larger sequences, in speech and writing.

The first round table was organized by Tom Bartlett and Gerard O’Grady at Cardiff University in September 2014, and a selection of papers from this event appeared in June 2016 as a special issue of the journal English Text Construction on « The dynamicity of communication below, around and above the clause« , edited by Ben Clarke (University of Portsmouth) and Jorge Arús Hita (Universidad Complutense de Madrid).

9th Brussels Conference on Generative Linguistics

BCGL 9: Phase Theory
Brussels, December 13-14, 2016.

Contact Person: Will Harwood
Web Site:

Linguistic Field(s): General Linguistics; Linguistic Theories; Syntax

Meeting Description:

Throughout the history of generative grammar, there have been various ways of implementing locality effects, for example through Transformational Cycles (Chomsky 1965; Kayne 1969) or Barriers (Chomsky 1986). Phase Theory (Uriagereka 1999; Chomsky 2000, 2001) constitutes the most recent development in this line of thinking. It is often argued that there exist discrete structural domains in natural language that exhibit a degree of syntactic, semantic, and phonological independence from their surrounding linguistic environment. Phase Theory offers a tool for understanding such domains. However, since the inception of phases, there have been many different proposals about the specific formalization of this concept, along with much debate about the extent to which phases can be evidenced empirically (and indeed whether phases exist at all). The aim of this workshop is to discuss the empirical validity and theoretical specifics of Phase Theory. The questions and issues this workshop aims to address, include, but are not limited to the following:

1. What are the empirical diagnostics for phases and how reliable are these? Common diagnostics for phases are:
– (related to the narrow syntax) successive-cyclic movement (islands), agreement, binding conditions, quantifier scope, and parasitic gaps (Fox 1998; Nissenbaum 1998; Legate 2003);
– (related to the PF-interface) ellipsis (Holmberg 1999, 2001; Gengel 2007, 2008), and prosodic rule application (Sato 2009);
– (related to the LF-interface) idiomatic expressions (Svenonius 2005; Harwood & Temmerman 2015; Kim 2015).

2. What is the definition of a phase? Do phases correspond to sub-numerations (Chomsky 2000, 2001), spell-out domains and/or workspaces (Uriagereka 1999)? Or do they need to be defined in terms of e.g. Prolific Domains (Grohmann 2003), Layered Derivations (Zwart 2009), or Cyclic Linearization (Fox & Pesetsky 2003, 2005)? Related questions are: What is the timing of spell-out and what exactly is spelled out (Chomsky 2000, 2001; Fox & Pesetsky 2003, 2005; Richards 2011; Bošković 2014)?

3. What does the inventory of phases look like: CP, vP, DP, PP, …? Is the size of a phase fixed? Are phases rigid and absolute or context-sensitive (cf. Bošković (2013, 2014), Wurmbrand (2013) and Harwood (2015) for dynamic phases, Den Dikken (2007) for phase extension, and Gallego (2010) for phase sliding)?

4. To what extent do phases at one interface (necessarily) coincide with phases at another interface (Marušič 2005; d’Alessandro & Scheer 2015)? Continue reading

AFLiCo 7 – Discours, Cognition & Constructions: Implications & Applications

7e Colloque International de l’Association française de Linguistique cognitive
31 mai-3 juin 2017 Liège (Belgique)


L’objectif principal de ce colloque consiste à confirmer et à renforcer le réseau de collaboration et de discussion des chercheurs en linguistique cognitive, en France dans un cadre international, comme ont pu le faire les colloques AFLiCo précédents à Bordeaux (2005), Lille (2007), Nanterre (2009), Lyon (2011), Lille (2013) et Grenoble (2015), et les journées JET à Bordeaux (2010) et Paris (2012, 2014 et 2016).


  • Myriam Bouveret (Université de Rouen & CNRS)
  • Barbara Dancygier (University of British Columbia, Canada)
  • Nicole Delbecque (KU Leuven, Belgium)
  • Sandra Halverson (Bergen University College, Norway)
  • Peter Harder (University of Copenhagen, Denmark)
  • Nick Riches (Newcastle University, UK)

Continue reading