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Hang Zhang

Tones are the most challenging aspect of learning Chinese pronunciation for adult learners and traditional research mostly attributes tonal errors to interference from learners’ native languages. In Second Language Acquisition of Mandarin Chinese Tones, Hang Zhang offers a series of cross-linguistic studies to argue that there are factors influencing tone acquisition that extend beyond the transfer of structures from learners’ first languages, and beyond characteristics extracted from Chinese. These factors include universal phonetic and phonological constraints as well as pedagogical issues. By examining non-native Chinese tone productions made by speakers of non-tonal languages (English, Japanese, and Korean), this book brings together theory and practice and uses the theoretical insights to provide concrete suggestions for teachers and learners of Chinese.
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Scott Shinabargar

If the transgressions of modern French poetry have been amply noted at thematic and formal levels, they remain largely unremarked at the most visceral level of reading. Indebted to, while problematizing the Kristevan concept of sémiotique, Scott Shinabargar’s The Revolting Body of Poetry reveals how the very “matter” of key works forces us to enact these transgressions, when articulating textures of offensive lexica and imagery. While certain phonemes provide access to previously untapped forces, first apparent in Baudelaire and Lautréamont, compulsive repetitions produce expressive inflation, diffusing any initial impact. Césaire and Char, however, demonstrate an acquired control of these forces, intensity contained. Shinabargar concludes with a survey of contemporary poets, inviting readers to consider the legacy of revolting poetics.
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Edited by Tanja Mortelmans, Jesse Mortelmans and Walter De Mulder

This volume is a selection of papers presented at the 7th Chronos colloquium in Antwerp (2006), which deal with the expression of modality (in a wide sense), by modal and semi-modal verbs (in Germanic and Romance languages), on the one hand, and by other markers (in languages like Turkish, Tibetan and Japanese), on the other. The Antwerp edition’s special conference topic was the interaction between tense and modality, of which some of the papers collected in this volume also testify. The volume covers a wide range of languages and topics. Specific topics include: the distinction between root and epistemic modality and its interaction with tense and counterfactuality; epistemic deve and dovrebbe in Italian; semi-modals in German; the interpretation of epistemic past modals in English and Spanish; the interface between Turkish ‘almost’ adverbs and the Turkish verbal system; the meaning of epistemic endings in Spoken Standard Tibetan; Korean ‘evidential’ markers teiru and ta and so-called fake past sentences in Japanese.
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The Proto-Germanic n-stems

A study in diachronic morphophonology

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Guus Kroonen

The n-stems are an intriguing part of Proto-Germanic morphology. Unlike any other noun class, the n-stems have roots that are characterized by systematic consonant and vowel alternations across the different Germanic dialects. This monograph represents a diachronic investigation of this root variation. It traces back the Germanic n-stems to their Indo-European origin, and clarifies their formal characteristics by an interaction of sound law and analogy. This book therefore is not just an attempt to account for the typology of the Germanic n-stems, but also a case study of the impact that sound change may have on the evolution of morphology and derivation.
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Accent Matters

Papers on Balto-Slavic accentology

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Edited by Tijmen Pronk and Rick Derksen

The accentual systems of the Baltic and Slavic languages continue to intrigue scholars of general and historical linguistics. They play an important role in the reconstruction of the linguistic ancestor of Baltic and Slavic, but also in the typological study of accentual systems. This volume contains contributions related to the accentology of the Baltic and Slavic languages by leading scholars in the field. They discuss the accentual systems that are attested in Baltic and Slavic dialects and texts, and the historical developments that led to these systems. The volume further contains contributions on similar accentual systems and developments in other languages, such as Abkhaz and the Mordvinian languages. A number of papers also deal with the role of the Balto-Slavic accents in the reconstruction of Proto-Indo-European. The volume reflects the progress that has been made in the field of Baltic and Slavic accentuation during the last decades. It forms a major source for anyone interested in the latest developments and insights in the study of accentuation.
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Anna Feldman and Jirka Hana

While supervised corpus-based methods are highly accurate for different NLP tasks, including morphological tagging, they are difficult to port to other languages because they require resources that are expensive to create. As a result, many languages have no realistic prospect for morpho-syntactic annotation in the foreseeable future. The method presented in this book aims to overcome this problem by significantly limiting the necessary data and instead extrapolating the relevant information from another, related language. The approach has been tested on Catalan, Portuguese, and Russian. Although these languages are only relatively resource-poor, the same method can be in principle applied to any inflected language, as long as there is an annotated corpus of a related language available. Time needed for adjusting the system to a new language constitutes a fraction of the time needed for systems with extensive, manually created resources: days instead of years.
This book touches upon a number of topics: typology, morphology, corpus linguistics, contrastive linguistics, linguistic annotation, computational linguistics and Natural Language Processing (NLP). Researchers and students who are interested in these scientific areas as well as in cross-lingual studies and applications will greatly benefit from this work. Scholars and practitioners in computer science and linguistics are the prospective readers of this book.
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Stressing the past

Papers on Baltic and Slavic accentology

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Edited by Thomas Olander and Jenny Helena Larsson

From a synchronic point of view, the various accentuation systems found in the Baltic and Slavic languages differ considerably from each other. We find languages with free accent and languages with fixed accent, languages with and without syllabic tones, and languages with and without a distinction between short and long vowels. Yet despite the apparent diversity in the attested Baltic and Slavic languages, the sources from which these languages have developed – the reconstructed languages referred to as Proto-Baltic and Proto-Slavic respectively – seem to have had very similar accentuation systems.
The prehistory and development of the Baltic and Slavic accentuation systems is the main topic of this book, which contains sixteen articles on Baltic and Slavic accentology written by some of the world’s leading specialists in this field.