Research interests

One of my main research questions is “how much is linearization determined strictly by syntactic structure?” The issues at work here are at the heart of the study of hierarchical structure. Syntactic structure is not visible to the naked ear: only the surface word order can be explicitly seen. So in order to investigate hierarchical syntactic structure at all, there has to be a connection between the data we have (word order) and the structures we are trying to determine (constituent hierarchy). I have investigated this question both syntactically and articulatorily with data from American Sign Language (ASL). ASL is uniquely situated to provide evidence for the mechanism of linearization because it has greater opportunity for overlapping and simultaneous articulation of constituents than a spoken language. My research has made use of close study of the physical expression of language data in order to shed light on syntactic problems. This “interface” between the syntactic structure and the phonetic form of the utterance gives us important information about the foundational hierarchies of syntactic structure.


“Nonmanual articulation in ASL: what can simultaneity reveal about syntactic structure?”
Colloquium talk, California State University, Fresno, Linguistics Department [Handout/PPT]
The Linguistics of Sign Languages
Guest lecture at UC Irvine, Linguistics 2 [PPT]
Phrase Structure and Linearization: Adverbs in ASL
Lab talk, University of Southern California, Linguistics Department PDF
Simultaneity as a window into structure: non-manual negation as explicit scope marking in ASL
BLS43, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, CA [Handout/Proceedings]
The simultaneous timing of adjunct adverbs in ASL
NELS 46 Poster/Proceedings
The syntax of non-manual adjunct adverbs in ASL
Syntax+ talk, PDF
Postpositive Conjunctions in Chukchansi Yokuts
Arts and Humanities Honors Symposium [Paper]
Figurative Language in Fairy Tales, Fairy Tales as Figurative Language
CSU Honors Conference [Paper]
The Sociolinguistic Network: Tracking Generational Change in Sociolinguistic Preferences with Social Networking
CSU Honors Conference, Great Lakes Expo for Experimental and Formal Undergraduate Linguistics [Poster/Proceedings]
Library Study at Fresno State – Research Team Member
Published by the Institute of Public Anthropology