UCL Psychology and Language Sciences


Call for Papers

Ellipsis is a grammatical phenomenon where a relevant part of the sentence is missing either due to deletion or incompleteness. Ellipsis is instantiated in a wide range of constructions: NP/VP/TP-ellipsis, sluicing, pseudogapping, stripping, and conjunction reduction, to name just a few. Ellipsis has become a prominent topic of research. The questions being asked in this area range from the old classic puzzles to groundbreaking work on newly discovered observations: What is the locus and size of the ellipsis site? What is the structure of the ellipsis site? Is the recoverability condition on ellipsis syntactic, semantic, and/or pragmatic in nature? Need there be correlated application of movement and other syntactic operations in the antecedent and the ellipsis site? Can syntactic violations be repaired by ellipsis? If so, how and why? What information structure constraints on ellipsis are there? Is it necessary for the remnant or the elided material to be focal, contrastive, etc.? Finally, can we define criteria, diagnostic tests and characteristics of specific ellipsis types? 

However, comparatively less theoretical or experimental work has been dedicated to cross-linguistic comparison of ellipsis licensing, or to the expansion of diagnostic tests for other phenomena related to ellipsis such as agreement or inter- and intra-speaker variation in ellipsis patterning. Hence, we especially encourage contributions on approaches to language/speaker variation and the typology of ellipsis licensing fed or bled by another syntactic, semantic or phonological operations or constraints and, more specifically, contributions addressing the issue of diagnosing clausal ellipsis as a strategy that yields surface effects described as conjunct agreement. These are old puzzles related to current work of our Experimental Morphosyntax of South Slavic project (https://www.ucl.ac.uk/pals/research/linguistics/research/leverhulme).

One particular aim of this conference is to bring about a discussion of the theoretical and empirical methodology in the research on ellipsis - theoretical linguistics and psycho- and neurolinguistics. We wish to cross the borders traditionally bounding research on ellipsis and bring together language scientists conducting both theoretical investigations on ellipsis and related phenomena (e.g. licensing, agreement, feature identity, coordination, extraction, multi-dominance, wh-fronting, P-stranding, RNR, Voice, gender markedness, inverse scope, recoverability, islands) and those studying ellipsis processing experimentally (e.g. grammaticality judgments, elicited production, quantitative corpus investigations, EEG, fMRI, eye-tracking). By bridging the gap between theoretical models and experimental methodologies, a more comprehensive understanding of ellipsis and related phenomena could be entertained.

Abstracts are invited for talks on topics on ellipsis in all areas of theoretical linguistics, comparative linguistics, psycholinguistics, neurolinguistics, language acquisition, and clinical linguistics. All theoretical and experimental studies that have consequences for linguistic theory are welcome. We particularly encourage contributions on approaches to rich intra- and inter-speaker variation. Abstracts can be submitted for either an oral presentations or a poster presentation. Each talk selected for presentation will be allotted 20 minutes followed by 10 minutes of discussion. Submissions will be anonymously refereed.