Spring 2018 400-Level Courses

Spring 2018 400-Level Courses

 

LING 402/ENG 436: The Structure of English - Anne Lobeck, Ph.D. 

TR 10:00-11:50 +1hr/week TBD

Prerequisite: LING 310

Credits: 5

Course Description: This course is designed to make you love something you think you hate: grammar. In fact, as you progress through the course you will likely find that studying grammar is not only less terrifying that you thought, but in fact, that it is actually rather interesting, and a lot of the time, even fun. Rather than correcting each other and learning ‘proper grammar’ in this class, we discover, by exploring your own intuitive knowledge of English, how this fascinating and complex and ever changing language works. This investigation provides you with the tools to analyze language in general, and English in particular, in any representation.

Along with the more technical aspects of grammatical analysis, we will explore how linguistic facts intersect (or don’t) with social attitudes about language and grammar. There are many thorny questions that arise when we find that in terms of grammatical structure, all language varieties are created equal, though many claim that one way of speaking is more desirable than another. Such judgments are social, not linguistic, and they tell us a lot about what we think of each other. They also have powerful social, political, and cultural effects that we will explore together in this class. 

 

LING 402: The Structure of Spanish - R. Mata, Ph.D.

TR 2:00-3:50

Prerequisite: LING 310

Credits: 4

This course surveys aspects of Spanish phonetics, phonology, morphology, and syntax. In addition to exploring the descriptive grammar of Spanish, we investigate dialectal differences in the Spanish-speaking world from a historical and contemporary viewpoint, gender classes, verbal morphology, and clause structure.

 

LING 402: Japanese Linguistics - Masanori Deguchi, Ph.D.

MWF 11:30-12:50

Prerequisite: LING 310

Credits: 5

This course is a survey of various aspects of the structure of Japanese: phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, and semantics. The main goals of this course are (i) to examine linguistic phenomena unique to Japanese and (ii) to analyze them to deepen the understanding of such phenomena. This course is beneficial for students of linguistics who are interested in Japanese and learners of Japanese with basic knowledge of general linguistics (e.g., Ling 310).

 

LING 402/ANTH 447: Semiotic Anthropology - Judith Pine, Ph.D.

MWF 1:00-2:20

Prerequisite: LING 310

Credits: 5

In this course, you will develop an understanding of the way that utterance and context interact to produce meaning, and the variety of ways in which meaning-making is essential to being human.  You will develop a basic understanding of both Saussurian and Piercean semiotics, and the use of semiotic analysis to gain insight into the frames we use to make sense of the world around us.  You will have the opportunity to reflect on the potential of semiotic analysis for making sense of data collected through linguistic, ethnographic and archaeological research.  In this class, we will discover the wide range of linguistic anthropology’s exploration of the way that language, meaning and mind interact.

Although the class has a linguistic anthropology focus, we will explore the value and uses of semiotics within other subdisciplines, in particular the use of semiotic archaeology in the analysis of archaeological artifacts and the way in which semiotic analysis can make sense of a constitution of the human body.

You will have the opportunity to use the tools of semiotic anthropology in an analysis of a symbolic system with which you feel comfortable and familiar.

 

LING 402/ENG 438: Language Variation and Change - Jordan Sandoval, Ph.D.

MWF 8:30-9:50

Prerequisite: LING 310

Credits: 5

This quarter we will focus on linguistic variation, with an emphasis on American English dialects and idiolects. The purpose of our investigation is not just to explore many different ways of doing English, but rather to also consider how we use and perceive linguistic variation as markers of our identities. We'll read a wide variety of articles and essays, reflecting on them in written assignments and class discussions. At the end of the quarter you'll have the opportunity to share some of your own research into language variation, particularly as it intersects with other areas of your academic interest.

 

LING 402/ENG 439: Old English - Kathryn Vulic, Ph.D.

MWF 1-2:20

Prerequisite: LING 310

Credits: 5

Course Description and Objectives: This course is intended for students who are new to the study of Old English, and will teach you how to read Old English prose and poetry. Though primarily a course on language and translation, this class will also necessarily teach students about some of the main features of Old English literature and literary history as they pertain to the translations we discuss.

With such an ambitious goal, this course is, unsurprisingly, fast-paced, because we will be covering the basics of Old English vocabulary and grammar in a single quarter. Please expect to devote the full 15 hours per week (including our class meetings) to this five-credit course. Though we will spend some class time going over the basics of vocabulary and grammatical paradigms, we will largely be learning by doing; the majority of class time will be devoted to discussing passages you will have translated at home. It is therefore crucial that all students come to class prepared with the day’s translation.

This course is ideal for students who are interested in medieval history, or linguistics, or the history of the English language, or early English literature and culture, or even just word puzzles (or any combination of these). This is one of my favorite courses to teach because of the pace and the fun of playing with words, and I look forward to seeing you there.

By the end of the course you should be able to translate two selections (one prose, one verse) from Old English to Modern English and to understand both the fundamentals of the language and the core principles of translation. For graduate students, passing the class with a B or better will satisfy the English department’s foreign language requirement.

Required assignments: In addition to your daily preparation (including practice exercises or translations) and participation (20%), you will take several quizzes (10%) that will help you assess your progress with the grammatical structures of Old English and prepare you for the exams; you will also take a midterm (20%) and a final (30%), which will consist of both translation and short answer. There is also an out-of-class translation project due at the end of the quarter that makes up the remaining 20% of your grade. Bonus/extra-credit points are available from time to time. Graduate students must earn a B or better in the class to get graduate language credit.

Required texts:

  • Peter S. Baker, Introduction to Old English, 3rd ed. (Blackwell, 2012). This is our class textbook. Please be careful to purchase the correct edition. Paperback version only, no ebooks – you’ll thank me when you start using the glossary.

  • The Magic Sheet, http://faculty.virginia.edu/OldEnglish/courses/handouts/magic.pdf. Print this on a color printer, and laminate it or find a sheet protector if you’d like; you’ll be using this reference sheet all term.

  • J. R. Clark Hall, A Concise Anglo-Saxon Dictionary, 4th ed. (Medieval Academy Reprints for Teaching, 1960).

 

LING 411: Topics Phonetics Phonology - Jordan Sandoval, Ph.D.

MWF 1-2:20

Prerequisites: LING 311

Credits: 5

This quarter we will focus on phonological transfer from primary to later learned languages. We'll explore the effects of native phonologies on second language (varietie)s by reading journal articles and discussing them in class. We'll consider the ways in which our knowledge of L1 phonology can predict what types of accented L2s emerge and evaluate language learner productions, both from a classroom environment as well as in the wild. Students should expect a significant amount of reading and writing throughout the quarter, culminating in a research paper presented to the class in the last few weeks.