GK Colloquium: Astrid Gößwein and Sanja Srdanović
Astrid Gößwein and Sanja Srdanović will give two talks in the GK colloquium series on Dec. 12, 4pm, in SH 2.106.
Astrid Gößwein: Experimental studies on the agreement of hybrid nouns in German
Abstract: Hybrid nouns are nouns like German Mädchen (‘girl’), which can occur with either syntactic or semantic agreement. In the case of Mädchen, syntactic agreement means that an element like a pronoun is neuter (like the grammatical gender), semantic agreement means feminine (like the natural gender). Two acceptability studies and a production experiment should determine which factors influence the agreement pattern, focusing mainly on the linear distance between noun and pronoun and the effect of the syntactic domain, i.e. if the pronoun is in a clause subordinated to that of the antecedent or in a new main clause. The results show an effect of linear distance but no effect of syntactic domain.
Sanja Srdanović: The structure and binding of Serbian possessives: a challenge for bilinguals?
Abstract: In this talk I will discuss the structure of possessives and their binding violations in Serbian with reference to cross-linguistic differences. A pronoun and an R- expression cannot co-refer in Serbian. A possible explanation, in favour of the no-DP analysis, is that the possessor is NP-adjoined, since Serbian lacks DP, the possessor c-commands out of the traditional NP and therefore, it causes the violation of binding principles B and C (Despić, 2011, Bošković, 2012). However, LaTerza (2016) provides two arguments against this analysis. In my study, I would like to investigate whether these problematic Serbian structures are challenging for bilinguals, namely for Serbian heritage speakers whose dominant language is German, since such structures are ambiguous in German.