The primary aim of LFRG is to give you an opportunity to have informal discussions of your own and other people's ideas without having to worry about saying something wrong. Thus, practice talks and presentations of works in progress (or in regress) or papers that you find interesting are especially welcome.
The range of possible topics include semantics, syntax, their interface, and whatnot having a connection to either syntax or semantics. The idea is that a lot of research does not fit into the straight jacket of a narrow area - though it is by no means required to have any interdisciplinary interests to attend LFRG.
Meetings this semester are:
Fridays, 2-3:30pm in 36-144 unless noted
There are basically four main kinds of meetings: 1) presentations of one's own work, including in progress and in regress; 2) a genuine reading group meeting: everyone reads, or at least browses, some interesting paper, and we discuss it; 3) a tutorial-like meeting where the persons in charge tell everyone something about not so widely known things - like cool experimental techniques, math tools, new empirical results, etc., and then optionally people say what they think about that; and 4) brainstorming sessions: the persons in charge provide a topic and the necessary background, and the point is to generate some ideas about what one can do about the topic.
Meetings and changes in the schedule are announced here and by email to interested people. If you want to receive the email announcements, want to be in charge of a meeting, or have any other comments about the Syntax-Semantics Reading Group, email either Aron Hirsch, Daniel Margulis or Paul Marty. An incomplete list of previous meetings: Spring 2015 Fall 2014 Fall 2013 Fall 2012 Spring 2012 Fall 2011 Spring 2011 Fall 2010 Spring 2010 Fall 2009, Spring 2009, Fall 2008, Spring 2008, Fall 2007, Spring 2007, Fall 2006.
Claiming an LFRG slot is not scary at all - so don't hesitate to do that!
Positive polarity items and scope in negative inversion constructions
Abstract: Negative inversion is a construction that involves the preposing of a negative expression and obligatory subject-auxiliary inversion (e.g. Never have I seen such a majestic giraffe!). Collins and Postal (2014) claim that the preposed negative element takes scope over everything else in the clause. However, I show that, while the negative expression does take scope over quantificational DPs, deontic modals should, must, and to be to, which have been argued to be positive polarity items (Iatridou and Zeijlstra 2013), are able to outscope it. I explore ways of capturing this fact and argue that several initially appealing explanations turn out to be problematic.