By Andries W. Coetzee
Apr 14, 2013
Our graduate students remain very active on the conference scene! On April 6, Mike Opper gave a presentation at the fifth meeting of the Illinois Language and Linguistics Society (ILLS 5). ILLS is an annual interdisciplinary linguistics conference, organized by Linguistics Student Organization at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Mike's presentation was titled "Word Length Flexibility in Nuosu Yi", and was very appropriate to the theme of the conference - "Minority Languages". Nuosu Yi is a minority language spoken by the Yi ethnic group in southwestern China. Mike's work connects with recent research by Professor San Duanmu and his students on flexible word length in the languages of China, and also with Mike's own recently completed QRP on this same phenomenon in English. A short abstract of Mike's poster is provided below. The final paper will be submitted to the ILLS conference proceedings.
Word Length Flexibility in Nuosu Yi
Word Length Flexibility in Nuosu Yi (Short Abstract) Word Length Flexibility (hereafter WLF) refers to the property of a word to have two semantically-equivalent variants – a short form and a long form. This property has been discussed extensivey for Standard Chinese (Duanmu 2007) and appears to be an areal feature of some Asian languages (Michuad 2012). This study examines WLF in Nuosu Yi (Sino-Tibetan:Loloish) – a minority language spoken in the People’s Republic of China – through a quantitative analysis of two Nuosu dictionaries. Theoretical discussion is provided in comparison with a similar study of WLF in Standard Chinese (Huang & Duanmu 2012).