David Embick's Abstracts/Manuscripts/Papers David Embick's Abstracts/Manuscripts/Papers


Case and the syntax of argument indexation: An analysis of Sorani Kurdish (2024)

Faruk Akkuş, David Embick, and Mohammed Salih

    Abstract: This is the second draft of our book on case and the syntax of argument indexation. We argue for an approach in which case labels ('Nominative', 'Ergative', etc.) are shorthand for bundles of decomposed features; crucially, these features are part of the syntax, and also referred to in the morphology. A key idea in the approach is what we call Case Targeting: the idea that probes may target arguments with specific case features. Importantly, syntax and morphology can refer to these features differentially, leading to various interesting mismatches. This includes allowing Clitic Movement in syntax to produce both morphophonological clitic and agreement affix on the PF side. Conversely, Agreement operation in syntax can produce morphophonological clitic and agreement affix on the PF side. We focus primarily on Sorani Kurdish varieties (Iranian languages), but also investigate and apply our approach to other Iranian languages (Kurmanji, Zazaki, Laki, Persian, Rushani, Shughni), Indo-Aryan (Hindi, Nepali, Gujarati, Maithili), Semitic (Arabic, Neo-Aramaic), and Polynesian (Nukuoro). Although we do not argue for a specific case assignment mechanism, we elaborate on various implications of the approach for implicational hierarchies, case containment etc. We maintain that discussions of inherent vs dependent case approaches should be approached at a fine grain, one that is informed by the representation of case features that we argue for.

The Morpheme: A Theoretical Introduction (2015) Mouton de Gruyter, Boston and Berlin. (de Gruyter link)

    Abstract: This book develops a theory of the morpheme in the framework of Distributed Morphology. Particular emphasis is devoted to the way in which functional morphemes receive their phonological form post-syntactically, through the operation of Vocabulary Insertion. In addition to looking closely at syncretism, the primary motivation for Vocabulary Insertion, the book examines allomorphy, blocking, and other key topics in the theory of the morpheme.

Localism versus Globalism in Morphology and Phonology (2010) MIT Press, Cambridge, MA.(MIT Press link)

    Abstract: This book develops two major themes. First, I present a cyclic (phase-based) theory of syntax/morphology, and show how this theory provides an account of attested patterns of allomorphy in language. Second, I compare the predictions of this "Localist" type of theory with those of "Globalist" theories like Optimality Theory. Based on a number of case studies that center on Phonologically Conditioned Allomorphy, I argue that the Localist view is correct, and that this finding has important implications for grammatical theory.

    Papers (/Handouts)

For convenience, divided into Theoretical+, Experimental, and Clinically-oriented.

Theoretical Linguistics+
  • Embick, D. (2023) 'Smaller syntax for English stative passives: A first report,' Acta Linguistica Academica 70:3, 285-316 smaller23pub.pdf
  • Embick, D. (to appear) 'Comparative syntax, morphology, and “externalization” (What happens at PF?)', for S. Barbiers, N. Corver, and M. Polinsky eds. The Cambridge Handbook of Comparative Syntax, CUP comp-syn-over.pdf
  • Embick, D. (to appear)) 'Abstract morphemes and local contexts', for A. Alexiadou, R. Kramer, A. Marantz, and I. Oltra-Massuet eds. The Cambridge Handbook of Distributed Morphology, CUP 3amlc.pdf
  • Embick, D., J. Benz, and L. Paparounas (2023) 'Blocking effects', in P. Ackema, S. Bendjaballah, E. Bonet, and A. Fábregas eds. The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Morphology block-over-21.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2021) 'The motivation for Roots in Distributed Morphology', Annual Review of Linguistics Vol. &, 69-88. embick-roots-20.pdf
  • Biggs, A. and D. Embick (2022) 'On the event structural properties of the English get-passive', Linguistic Inquiry 53:2, 211-254 biggs-embick-get20.pdf
  • Embick, D., Y. White and M. Tamminga, (2019) 'Heritage Languages and variation: Identifying shared factors', commentary article on M. Polinksy and G. Scontras 'Understanding heritage languages', Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, https://doi.org/10.1017/S1366728919000476 heritage-comm-final.pdf
  • Embick, D. and K. Shwayder (2018) 'Deriving morphophonological (mis)applications', to appear in R. Petrosino, P. Cerrone, and H. Van Der Hulst (eds.) From Sounds to Structures: Beyond the Veil of Maya, Mouton de Gruyter, 195-250. deriving-morphophono.pdf
  • Embick (2016) 'Approaching Polymorphy', Handout from a talk series, SADAF, Buenos Aires, December 2016. sadaf.pdf
  • Tamminga, M., L. MacKenzie, and D. Embick (2016) 'The dynamics of variation in individuals', Language Variation . 16:2, 300-336. tamminga-etal-16.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2016)) 'On the targets of phonological realization'. In V. Gribanova and S. Shih eds. The Morphosyntax/Phonology Connection, Oxford University Press, p.255-283. (Uncorrected proof) embick-mspi-proof.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2016) 'On the distribution of stem alternants: Separation and its limits' In The morphome debate: Diagnosing and analyzing morphomic patterns edited by R. Bermúdez-Otero and A. Luís, p.276-305. embick-stem-alt16.pdf (uncorrected proof)
  • Embick, D. (2014) 'Phase cycles, φ-cycles, and phonological (in)activity' In S. Bendjaballah, M. Lahrouchi, N. Faust, and N. Lampitelli eds. The form of structure, the structure of forms: Essays in honor of Jean Lowenstamm, John Benjamins, pp. 270-286. ph-cycle-sept.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2013) 'Locality across domains: From morphemes to structures to sounds' Handout of a talk given at NELS 44, October 2013. [Presents an overview and synthesis of some of my work on allomorphy and morphophonology.] nels-embick.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2013) 'Morphemes and morphophonological loci' In Distributed Morphology Today: Morphemes for Morris Halle, edited by A. Marantz and O. Matushansky, MIT Press. loci.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2012) 'Roots and features (an acategorial postscript)' In Theoretical Linguistics 38:1-2. chamorro-commentary.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2012) 'Contextual conditions on stem alternations: Illustrations from the Spanish conjugation' In I. Franco, S. Lusini and A. Saab eds. Romance Languages and Linguistic Theory 2010. Selected papers from 'Going Romance' Leiden 2010. John Benjamins. (uncorrected proof) span-stem-proof.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2010) 'Stem alternations and stem distributions' [This draft from 2010 is a first attempt to work through some questions in morphophonology from the perspective a general theory of allomorphy. The contents are reworked and remixed in some later publications (see above). I'm making this draft available in its original form (i.e., with many shortcomings) in the hopes that the overall perspective it offers will be of some interest.] stem-ms-10.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2009) 'Roots, States, and Stative Passives' Handout from a talk presented at the Roots Workshop, Stuttgart, June 2009. stut.pdf
  • Embick, D. and A. Marantz (2008) 'Architecture and blocking' Linguistic Inquiry 39:1. arch-block.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2008) 'Variation and morphosyntactic theory: Competition fractionated' In Language and Linguistics Compass 2/1. variation.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2007) 'Linearization and Local Dislocation: Derivational mechanics and interactions' Linguistic Analysis. lin.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2007) 'Blocking Effects and Analytic/Synthetic Alternations' Natural Language and Linguistic Theory 25:1. comparative-2007.pdf
  • Embick, D. and R. Noyer (2007) 'Distributed Morphology and the Syntax/Morphology Interface' In Oxford Handbook of Linguistic Interfaces [Scan]: interface.pdf
  • Embick, D. and M. Halle (2005) On the Status of Stems in Morphological Theory. In T. Geerts and H. Jacobs eds. Proceedings of Going Romance 2003, John Benjamins. stem.pdf
  • Embick D. (2004) 'On the Structure of Resultative Participles in English' Linguistic Inquiry, 35:3. result.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2004) "Unaccusative syntax and verbal alternations" (uncorrected proof) unacc.pdf
  • R. Bhatt and D. Embick (2004/2017) "Causative derivaitons in Hindi-Urdu", Journal of Indian Linguistics 78(1-2), 93-151. cause-pub17.pdf [This paper was written in 2003-4 and published in 2017; see the Preface for some comments from the authors.]
  • Embick, D. and M. Halle (2003), "Latin Inflections", Handout from a talk presented at Going Romance 2003, Nijmegen. infl.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2003) "Locality, Listedness, and Morphological Information" locality-list.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2000) "Participial structures and participial asymmetries" (handout) part-2000.pdf
  • Embick, D. (2000) "Features, Syntax, and Categories in the Latin Perfect" latin.pdf
  • Embick, D. and R. Noyer (1999) "Locality in Post-Syntactic Operations" localityin.pdf
  • Embick, D. (1998) "Voice systems and the syntax/morphology interface" voicesys.pdf
  • Embick, D. and R. Izvorski (Pancheva) (1997) "Participle-Auxiliary Word-Orders in Slavic" partaux.pdf
  • Embick, D. (1997) "Voice and the interfaces of syntax". PhD Thesis, University of Pennsylvania. [(i) big file; (ii) caveat lector (finished in a hurry, among other things...)] embick1997.pdf
  • Embick, D. (1996) "Causativization in Hupa" hupcaus.pdf
  • Embick, D. (1995) "Mobile inflections in Polish" mobinf.pdf
  • Embick, D. and R. Izvorski (Pancheva) (1995) 'On Long Head Movement in Bulgarian', in ESCOL '94 bulgarian-lhm.pdf

Experimental (Psycho-, Neuro-) Linguistics
  • White, Y., D. Embick and M. Tamminga (2024) `Affix priming with variable ING in English: Implications for unique vs. dual representation', Journal of Memory and Language 138. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jml.2024.104535 white-etal-24.pdf
  • Wade, L., M. Tamminga, and D. Embick (2023) 'Dialect experience modulates cue reliance in sociolinguistic convergence' Glossa Psycholinguistics DOI: https://doi.org/10.5070/G6011187 wade-etal23.pdf
  • Creemers, A., N. Chanchaochai, M. Tamminga, and D. Embick (2023) 'The activation of embedded (pseudo-)stems in auditory lexical processing: Implications for models of spoken word recognition,' to appear in Language, Cognition, and Neuroscience. pigment-pig-final.pdf
  • Creemers, A. and D. Embick (2022) 'The role of semantic transparency in the processing of spoken compound words', Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition 48(5) 734-751. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/xlm0001132 creemers-embick22.pdf
  • Creemers, A. and D. Embick (2021) 'Retrieving stem meanings in opaque words during auditory lexical processing', Language, Cognition, and Neuroscience 36:9, 1107-1122. https://doi.org/10.1080/23273798.2021.1909085 creemers-embick21.pdf
  • Embick, D., A. Creemers, and A. Goodwin Davies (2021) 'Morphology and the mental lexicon: Three questions about decomposition', in L. Gleitman, A. Papafragou, and J. Trueswell eds. The Oxford Handbook of the Mental Lexicon, Oxford University Press, 77-97. mentlex-proof.pdf
  • Creemers, A., N. Chanchaochai, and D. Embick. 'Auditory priming of pseudo-suffixed words'. Proceedings of ExLing 2019: 10th International Conference of Experimental Linguistics, ed. by Antonis Botinis. Athens, Greece, pp. 65-68. aud-pseud.pdf
  • Creemers, A., A. Goodwin Davies, R. J. Wilder, M. Tamminga, and D. Embick (2020) 'Opacity, transparency, and morphological priming: A study of prefixed verbs in Dutch', Journal of Memory and Language Vol. 110, 104055. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jml.2019.104055 creemers-etal-19.pdf
  • Goodwin Davies, A. and D. Embick (2019) 'The representation of plural inflectional affixes in English: evidence from priming in an auditory lexical decision task' Language, Cognition and Neuroscience 35:3, 393-401. https://doi.org/10.1080/23273798.2019.1684528 infl-prime.pdf
  • Bacovcin, Hezekiah Akiva, Amy Goodwin Davies, Robert J. Wilder, and David Embick (2019) 'Intervention in two rhyme priming tasks',  Proceedings of the Mental Lexicon Conference rpi.pdf
  • Wilder, R., A. Goodwin Davies, and D. Embick (2018) 'Differences between morphological and repetition priming in auditory lexical decision: Implications for decompositional models' Cortex 116, 122-142. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cortex.2018.10.007 wilder-etal-18.pdf
  • Bacovcin, H. A., A. Goodwin Davies, R. Wilder, and D. Embick (2017) 'Auditory Morphological Processing: Evidence from Phonological Priming', Cognition Volume 164, p.102-106. bgdwe17.pdf
  • Zellou G., D. Dahan and D. Embick (2017) 'Imitation of coarticulatory vowel nasality across words and time', Language, Cognition, and Neuroscience 32:6, p. 776-791. zde17.pdf
  • Embick, D. and D. Poeppel (2015) 'Towards a computational(ist) neurobiology of language; Correlational, integrated, and explanatory neurolinguistics' Language, Cognition, and Neuroscience 30:4, 357-366. embick-poeppel15.pdf
  • Brennan, J., Lignos, C., Embick, D., and T.P.L. Roberts (2014) 'Spectro-temporal correlates of lexical access during auditory lexical decision' Brain and Language 133, 39-46. sem-prime.pdf
  • Tavabi, K., D. Embick, and T.P.L. Roberts (2011) 'Word repetition priming-induced oscillations in auditory cortex: a magnetoencephalography study' NeuroReport 22(17):887-891. ter2.pdf
  • Tavabi, K., D. Embick, and T.P.L. Roberts (2011) 'Spectral-temporal analysis of cortical oscillations during lexical processing' NeuroReport 22(10):474-478. ter1.pdf
  • Embick, D. and A. Marantz (2005) 'Cognitive Neuroscience and the English Past Tense: Comments on the Paper by Ullman et al.' Brain and Language 93. past.pdf
  • Poeppel, D. and D. Embick (2005) 'Defining the relation between linguistics and neuroscience' (2005) In A. Cutler ed. Twenty-first century psycholinguistics: Four cornerstones, Lawrence Erlbaum. lingneuro.pdf
  • Embick, D. and D. Poeppel (2003) Mapping Syntax Using Imaging: Prospects and Problems for the Study of Neurolinguistic Computation. In Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics. mappingsyntax.pdf
  • Embick M. Hackl, J. Schaeffer, M. Kelepir, and A. Marantz, (2001) 'A magnetoencephalographic component whose latency reflects lexical frequency', Brain Research: Cognitive Brain Research 10, p. 345-348. cbr-2001.pdf
  • Embick, D. A. Marantz, Y. Miyashita, W. O’Neil, and K.L. Sakai (2000) 'A syntactic specialization for Broca’s area’, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 97:11, p. 6150-6154. fmripnas.pdf

Clinically-oriented Neuro
  • Matsuzaki, J., M. Ku, M. Dipiero, T. Chiang, J. Saby, L. Blaskey, E.S. Kuschner, J.I. Berman, L. Bloy, Y. Chen, J. Dell, J.C. Edgar, S. Liu, E.S. Brodkin, D. Embick, and T.P.L. Roberts (2020) 'Delayed audi- tory evoked responses in Autism Spectrum Disorder: Across the lifespan', Developmental Neuroscience 41:223-233.
  • Gaetz,W., E. Rhodes, L. Bloy, L. Blaskey, C.R. Jackel, E.S. Brodkin, A. Waldman, D.Embick, S. Hall, and T.P.L. Roberts (2020) 'Evaluating motor cortical oscillations and age-related change in autism spectrum disorder', Neuroimage vol. 207 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuroimage.2019.116349
  • Roberts, T. P. L., J. Matsuzaki, L. Blaskey, L., Bloy, J. C. Edgar, M. Kim, M. Ku, E. S. Kuschner, and D. Embick (2019) 'Delayed M50/M100 Evoked Response Component Latency in Minimally Verbal/Non-Verbal Children who have Autism Spectrum Disorder', Molecular Autism 10:34, DOI: 10.1186/s13229-019-0283-3. roberts-etal-19.pdf
  • Matsuzaki, J., L. Bloy, L. Blaskey, J. Miller, E.S. Kuschner, M. Ku, M. Dipiero, M. Airely, J. C. Edgar, D. Embick, J.L. Ross, and T.P.L. Roberts (2019) ‘Abnormal auditory mismatch fields in children and adolescents with 47, XYY syndrome’, Developmental Neuroscience DOI: 10.1159/000500799 matsuzaki-etal-xyy.pdf
  • Matsuzaki, J., L. Blaskey, L., Bloy, J. C. Edgar, M. Kim, M. Ku, E. S. Kuschner, D. Embick and T.P.L. Roberts (2019) 'Abnormal auditory mismatch fields are associated with communication impairment in both verbal and minimally verbal/ non-verbal children who have autism spectrum disorder', Autism Research DOI: 10.1002/aur.2136 matsuzaki-etal-mmf.pdf
  • Bloy, Luke, Kobey Shwayder, Lisa Blaskey, Timothy P. L. Roberts, and David Embick (2019) 'A Spectrotemporal Correlate of Language Impairment in Autism Spectrum Disorder', Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders doi: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-019-04040-x bloy-etal-19.pdf

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