DGfS 2018 Workshop: “Variation and phonetic detail in spoken morphology”

Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Sprachwissenschaft
Stuttgart, Germany

March 7-9, 2018

Call For Abstracts

Submission deadline 20.8.2017
Invited Speaker
Sharon Peperkamp, Laboratoire de Sciences Cognitives et Psycholinguistique, Paris


The relation between phonetics, phonology and morphology is much more complex than is assumed in current theories. For example, stress preservation in derived words is more variable than hitherto assumed. A word like orìginálity preserves main stress in its base oríginal as secondary stress, but other words have variable secondary stress (e.g. antìcipátion ~ ànticipátion, derived from antícipate, e.g. Collie 2008). In addition, there is evidence suggesting that acoustic and articulatory detail may play a role in the realization of morphologically complex words. For example, an [s] in American English is longer if it is part of a stem than when it is a plural marker or a clitic (cf. Plag et al. 2017). Pertinent work on both issues springs from different linguistic disciplines, in particular psycholinguistics, theoretical linguistics, phonetics, phonology, morphology, computational and quantitative linguistics, and has led to novel proposals regarding the general architecture of the morphology-phonology-phonetics interface. Different theories have been proposed on the basis of lexical listing vs. computation, analogical models or discriminative learning.

Within different linguistic disciplines, we see an increasing body of empirical work that addresses problems of variation and phonetic detail in morphology with the help of spoken data (e.g. Cohen 2015; Ben Hedia & Plag 2017, Strycharczuk & Scobbie 2017). Furthermore, there is more and more work testing theoretical proposals with the help of computational simulations (e.g. Arnold et al. 2017).

This workshop aims to bring together work from different disciplines that study and model variation and phonetic detail on the basis of spoken data. Relevant issues include: What new insights can spoken data bring to our knowledge about morphophonological variation? Are speakers sensitive to and/or aware of systematic subphonemic differences? What cognitively plausible computational and psycholinguistic models do best account for this variability? How can our theories of morphology deal with variation within and between speaker? What is the status of morphophonological and morphophonetic variation in grammar?


Arnold, D., Tomaschek, F., Sering, K., Lopez, F., and Baayen, R.H. 2017. Words from spontaneous conversational speech can be recognized with human-like accuracy by an error-driven learning algorithm that discriminates between meanings straight from smart acoustic features, bypassing the phoneme as recognition unit. PLOS.

Ben Hedia, Sonia & Ingo Plag. 2017. Gemination and degemination in English prefixation: Phonetic evidence for morphological organization. Journal of Phonetics 62, 34-49.

Cohen, Clara P. 2014. Probabilistic reduction and probabilistic enhancement. Morphology, 24(4), 291-323.

Collie, Sarah. 2008. English stress preservation: the case for ‘fake cyclicity’. English Language and Linguistics 12(3). 505–532.

Plag, Ingo, Julia Homann & Gero Kunter. 2017. Homophony and morphology: The acoustics of word-final S in English. Journal of Linguistics 53(1), 181–216.

Strycharczuk, Patrycja and James M. Scobbie. 2017. Whence the fuzziness? Morphological effects in interacting sound changes in Southern British English. Laboratory Phonology: Journal of the Association for Laboratory Phonology 8(1): 7, 1–21.

Important Dates

Abstract submission deadline: Aug. 20, 2017
Notification of acceptance: Sept. 3, 2017
Submission of final abstract: Nov. 1, 2017
Conference: March 7-9, 2018

Abstracts should be 300-400 words (1 page) and may contain additional material, such as examples, figures and references on another page. The uploaded file must be in PDF format.

Submission https://easychair.org/conferences/?conf=dgfsag1

Organization and Programme Committee
Sabine Arndt-Lappe (University Trier)
Gero Kunter (University of Düsseldorf)
Ruben van de Vijver (University of Düsseldorf)
Fabian Tomaschek (University of Tübingen)


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