Diachronic Corpora and the Study of Language

Fri, January 23, 2015 | BUR 337

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Diachronic Corpora and the Study of Language

with Prof. Anke Luedeling, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany

How can morphological, lexical, and syntactic change be found and analyzed in diachronic corpora? Historical linguistics is inherently corpus based and many of the techniques that have been used in historical linguistics for centuries are precursors of corpus-linguistic techniques today. The use of electronic corpora makes many research questions easier to answer and results transparent and replicable. There are many decisions that have to be made when building a synchronic historical corpus and even more decisions are necessary in building a diachronic corpus. 

Using two diachronic corpora, Dr. Luedeling will show that it is necessary to use a powerful corpus architecture which allows many independent annotation layers. She will demonstrate this by looking at morphological change (perfect auxiliaries), syntactic change (relative clauses) and lexical change. The focus of this talk is methodological. The corpora, DDB, and Ridges are in German, but knowledge of German is not required. 

Sponsored by the Germanic Studies Department and the Texas Language Center

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