The Ideophone

If you haven’t done so yet, I recommend visting The Ideophone, a new blog written by Mark Dingemanse, a PhD student at MPI Nijmegen. So far he has mostly been writing substantial and interesting posts on African languages and expressivity. He has also just written a post on Zotero, a free bibliographic database program with nice web browser integration.

Journal of Language Contact

I recently discovered yet another open access online linguistics journal that readers may find interesting: The Journal of Language Contact . The journal has thus far published one issue, and as the following table of contents shows, they have been able to attract some of the big names in contact linguistics as contributors to their inaugural issue:

Robert Nicolaï. Le contact des langues : point aveugle du ‘linguistique’; Language Contact: A Blind Spot in ‘Things Linguistic’.

Donald Winford. Some Issues in the Study of Language Contact.

Sarah Thomason. Language Contact and Deliberate Change.

Salikoko Mufwene. Population Movements and Contacts in Language Evolution.

Bernard Py. Apprendre une langue et devenir bilingue : un éclairage acquisitioniste sur les contacts des langues.

Petr Zima. Why languages and contact.

Malcom Ross. Calquing and Metatypy.

Marianne Mithun. Grammar, Contact and Time.

Lorenza Mondada. Le code switching comme ressource pour l’organisation de la parole-en-interaction.

Robert Nicolaï. Contact des langues et contact dans la langue : hétérogénéité, construction de l’homogène et émergence du ‘linguistique’

Dissertations on Amazonian Languages

I recently discovered a very nice online resource: an online collection of dissertations and master’s theses on Amazonian languages, here ( The majority of the dissertations on this page were written by students at Brazilian universities, but there are also several from US and European ones. It’s especially nice that this page has Brazilian dissertations, since those are frequently hard to get a hold of outside of Brazil.

Here, to whet your appetite, is a small sample of titles:

Ferreira, Rogério Vicente. 2005. Língua Matis (Pano): uma descrição gramatical. Doutorado, Unicamp.

Freitas, Deborah de Brito Albuquerque Pontes. 2003. Escola Makuxi : identidades em construção. Doutorado, Unicamp

Santos, Manoel Gomes dos. 2006. Uma gramática do Wapixana (Aruák): aspectos da fonologia, da morfologia e da sintaxe. Doutorado, Unicamp.

Sousa Filho, Sinval Martins de. 2007. Aspectos morfossintáticos da língua Akwe-Xerente. Doutorado, UFG.

Zuccolillo, Carolina Maria Rodriguez. 2000. Língua, nação e nacionalismo: um estudo sobre o Guarani no Paraguai. Doutorado, Unicamp.


On the off chance that not everyone reads all the comments, I wanted to mention two recent comments of interest…

Northwest Journal of Linguistics

Tony Webster mentioned another new, free, open access, online linguistics journal: The Northwest Journal of Linguistics, which focuses on the languages of northwest North America. To be sure, even the most liberal definitions of Greater Amazonia don’t stretch the borders that far north, but we mustn’t be too parochial.

The journal started publishing in 2007, and has released four issues with an article apiece. One article caught my eye in particular as having significant import outside the areal linguistics of the northwest: Extending the Prosodic Hierarchy: Evidence from Lushootseed Narrative by David Beck and David Bennett. The basic claim of this article is that in Lushootseed narratives one finds evidence for a multi-utterance prosodic constituent, the prosodic paragraph. One of the nice points about this article is that it incidentally makes a case for the linguistic relevance of particular discourse genres and verbal art. The poetic line is a well-known prosodic constituent associated with verbal artistry, and the authors of this article argue that the prosodic paragraph, typically neglected in treatments of the prosodic hierarchy, has good empirical support. Showing one of the major strengths of online journals, the article also includes sound files of the sections of narrative analyzed in the article.


Nick Thieberger wrote in to mention a project that he is involved with at the University of Melbourne to develop an application (EOPAS) that allows one to export Toolbox text as HTML with time-aligned links to audiofiles. Discussion of this project and several other interesting discussions and links related to interlinearized text and other forms of annotation can be found at their project wiki: here.

New Issue of Language Documentation and Conservation

The new issue of Language Documentation and Conservation (LD&C) just became available, through the LD&C homepage (

If you haven’t yet had a look at this free, online, peer-reviewed journal, I highly recommend you do so now. Articles include thoughtful discussions of matters related to language documentation, and language loss and revitalization. As a bonus, each issue includes a section with reviews of linguistic software.