LING 492 - Topics in Linguistics
Section: 002 Salish Linguistics
Term: FA 2009
Subject: Linguistics (LING)
Department: LSA Linguistics
May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credit(s). May be elected more than once in the same term.
Primary Instructor:

This seminar focuses on Montana Salish, one of the twenty-three languages of the Salishan language family of the Pacific Northwest (Washington, Oregon, British Columbia, northern Idaho, western Montana). The languages of this family, all of them gravely endangered, have structural features that are unusual in the world's languages, notably consonant clusters at least as long as eight consonants, pharyngeal consonant phonemes, over a hundred lexical suffixes, very elaborate verbal morphology, and a weak lexical distinction between nouns and verbs.

The course will begin with orientation — an outline of the phonetics, phonology, morphology, and syntax of Montana Salish. By the second week we will begin translating and analyzing Salish texts, an activity that will occupy a portion of every class session throughout the term. By the third or fourth week, students will decide on a research project, to be carried out individually or with a research partner; possible topics might be describing a piece of Salish structure (for instance the aspect system, adjectival constructions, the transitivity system, or vowel alternations), or comparing a piece of Montana Salish structure with analogous structure in another Salishan language, or analyzing an aspect of Montana Salish history. The final research results will be presented in a term paper of 15-20 pages.

Half of the course grade will be based on class participation, including research presentations as well as participation in class discussions; the term paper will determine other half of the grade.

LING 492 - Topics in Linguistics
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
MW 1:00PM - 2:30PM
Note: Meets with 792.002
002 (SEM)
W 2:30PM - 5:30PM
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