UBC Department of Linguistics
Totem Field Studios
2613 West Mall
Vancouver, British Columbia
M.A., University of Iceland, 1997
Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, 2001
Dissertation: Theoretical and typological issues in consonant harmony (pdf)
The main focus of my research is on theoretical phonology, and the demarcation of phonology as a component of grammar relative to morphology and phonetics. Currently my research primarily revolves around harmony systems, in particular consonant harmony, and the more general issue of non-local interactions in (segmental) phonology.
A central topic of interest is the interplay of diachronic and synchronic factors in shaping language structure, and thus the study of processes of phonologization (the emergence of systematic sound patterns from phonetic effects) and morphologization (the extension and/or reanalysis of sound patterns through analogical change).
I am also interested in various issues related to morphological paradigms and their manifestation: inflectional classes, allomorphy, syncretism patterns and paradigm gaps.
Languages I have worked on include Icelandic (my native language), Faroese (its closest relative), Saami (a.k.a. Lapp; Finno-Ugric), Turkish, Tsilhqot'in (a.k.a. Chilcotin; Athapaskan) and Yowlumne (a.k.a. Yawelmani; Yokuts).
(2011) [with Patrick J. Moore] The phonetics of transparency in Kaska vowel harmony. Working Papers in Athabaskan Languages 2010 [Proceedings of the 2010 Athabascan/Dene Languages Conference], Eugene, Oregon, June 25–27, 2010, ed. by S. Tuttle and O. Lovick. Fairbanks, AK: Alaska Native Language Center.
(2010) Consonant Harmony: Long-Distance Interaction in Phonology. (University of California Publications in Linguistics, 145.) Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. [Available on-line (free) at eScholarship.org.]
(2010) Long-distance voicing assimilation in Berber: spreading and/or agreement? Actes du Congrès de l'ACL 2010 / 2010 CLA Conference Proceedings, ed. by M. Heijl. Association canadienne de linguistique / Canadian Linguistic Association. [http://homes.chass.utoronto.ca/~cla-acl/actes2010]
(2008) Effects of contrast recoverability on the typology of harmony systems. Contrast in Phonology: Theory, Perception, Acquisition, ed. by P. Avery, B. E. Dresher and K. Rice, pp. 115–141. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.
(2008) Diachronic explanations of sound patterns. Language & Linguistics Compass 2(5): 859–893.
(2007) Productive syncretism in Saami inflectional morphology. Saami Linguistics, ed. by I. Toivonen and D. Nelson, pp. 91–135. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
(2007) On the evolution of consonant harmony: the case of secondary articulation agreement. Phonology 24(1): 77-120.
(2007) Blocking effects in agreement by correspondence. Linguistic Inquiry 38(2): 395-409.
(2004) Tone and voicing agreement in Yabem. WCCFL 23: Proceedings of the 23rd West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics, ed. by B. Schmeiser, V. Chand, A. Kelleher and A. Rodriguez, pp. 318-331. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Press.