The Weekly Newsletter of MIT Linguistics

Ling-Lunch 10/10 - Alexander Podobryaev

Speaker: Alexander Podobryaev
Title: Context and assignment in indexical shifting
Date/Time: Thursday, Oct 10, 12:30-1:45p
Location: 32-D461

Recently, there has been a lot of work done on “shifting” of indexical pronouns in embedded contexts, in various languages. In this talk I examine some novel data from Mishar Tatar (MT<Turkic). There seems to be two kinds of indexical pronouns in MT: indexicals that are context-dependent (cf. Anand 2006), and those that are are only assignment-dependent (cf. Sudo 2012). It is only the latter that can get “shifted” interpretation in embedded contexts (because the monster operator in MT presumably can only manipulate the assignment function but not the context). Crucially, it is also only the latter that can appear as “fake” (semantically bound) indexicals. What’s more, it also happens that context-dependent pronouns are phonologically overt, while assignment-dependent pronouns are null. Time permitting, I will discuss why this would be the case.