The Department of French and Italian

Italian Placement Testing on 08/28 in HRH 2.106B @ 1:30 pm

Faculty and Graduate Student Colloquium

Fri, November 19, 2010 | HRH 2.118 French and Italian Lounge

4:00 PM

Assistant Professor, Bryan Donaldson-Initial subordinate clauses in the clausal left-periphery in early Old French

In this presentataion I discuss variation in the syntactic behavior of initial subordinate clauses in a series of early Old French texts (10-12th centuries). Initial subordinate clauses headed by quant 'when,' se 'if,' por ce que 'because,' and other demonstratio variation along two axes: the clausal position of the subordinate with respect to the following main clause. The syntax of the main clause, specifically after subordinates in se, shows early evidence of the eventual evolution toward the modern Subject-Verb order. Drawing on evidence from the position of object clitic pronouns and the presence of left-dislocated constituents, I argue that the default position for the initial subordinates was outside the clausal structure proper, in the left-peripheral Frame field, in both early and later Old French.


Graduate Student, Nicholas Bacuez-Prosody: Defining Vagueness

The main claim of the Autosegmental-Metrical model, the most prolific theory on intonation since the 1980s, is that phonetic disparities can be resolved with the proper phonological model: the intuition that some utterances have something in common in spite of apparent variations comes from the fact that their underlying similar structure is similar. A single object gives rise to many of the different shadows dancing on the wall of Plato's cave. For this colloquium, I will briefly present how I am addressing this idea in my dissertation. My work is based on the concept of vagueness, which, according to Russel and Wittgenstein, is a necessary feature of language: it allows intercommunication among idiolects. I employ a quantitative approach to linguistic vagueness using fuzzy sets theory, which was developed to deal with non-binary problems in logic. Although fuzzy (or many-valued) logic is commonly used in engineering, no linguistic model has so far used it. With the help of fuzzy logic, I am developing a method to extract prosodic forms from their ever-changing aspects.

Sponsored by: Department of French and Italian

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Tavola Italiana

Informal Italian conversation practice Fridays 3-4pm at the Texas Union's Cactus Café. Open to all students of Italian. Contact Antonella Olson for more information.

Le Cercle français

Informal French conversation practice Fridays in the Texas Union's Cactus Café from 3-4pm. Open to all students of French. Contact Nancy Guilloteau for more information.


Italian Placement Testing 

Professor Antonella will be administering placement exams on Monday, August 28th in HRH 2.106B at 1:30 pm. If you are seeking to take an Italian Language Placement Test, please attend this session. Due to time constraints makeups are not guranteed.

Cineforum Italiano

Hosting Italian films with English subtitles every Thursdays at 8:00 pm in Mezes B0.306. 

  • Department of French and Italian

    University of Texas at Austin
    201 W 21st Street STOP B7600
    HRH 2.114A
    Austin, TX 78712-1800