Autumn Meeting 2000: University of Durham

First Circular and Call for Papers

The Autumn Meeting of the Linguistics Association of Great Britain will be held in St. John's College, University of Durham, from September 7 - 9. The local organizers are S.J. Hannahs <> and Maggie Tallerman <>.

St. Johns' College where the meeting will be held is one of the peninsula colleges of Durham, and forms part of the World Heritage Site containing the magnificent Norman cathedral (which dates from 1093) and castle (dating from 1072). Both are a three minute walk from the meeting venue. The castle was formerly the seat of the Prince Bishops, who ruled the County Palatine as a virtually independent state with its own army, courts and coinage. In 1832 the castle became the foundation college of the University, and can be viewed by the public in excellent guided tours. St. John's is also a few minutes' walk from the thickly wooded banks of the river Wear, and attractive footpaths meander round the entire peninsula. Durham is a tiny but spectacular city with all its historic attractions within walking distance; it also has several good museums and a large number of traditional public houses selling a wide variety of real ales!

Accommodation: All talks will be held in St. John's College, where the accommodation consists of single study bedrooms with washbasins and shared bathroom facilities. Twin bedded rooms are also available if booked in advance.

Travel: The city has very good rail and road links: for rail travellers, Durham is on the East Coast Main Line, and is just off the A1M for those who wish to drive. Parking facilities are available nearby, but are extremely limited in the immediate vicinity of the meeting venue, and so participants are not recommended to travel by car. The nearest international airports are at Newcastle and Teesside, and are both approximately an hour away from Durham by public transport. St. John's College is roughly 15 minutes from the train station on foot, or a 5 minute taxi ride.

Events: The Henry Sweet Lecture 2000 on the Thursday evening will be delivered by Professor Peter Sells (Stanford University), who will be discussing recent developments in the Optimality Theory approach to morphosyntax.

There will also be a Workshop on OT syntax, organized by Ad Neeleman (UCL) and Vieri Samek-Lodovici (UCL), speakers to be announced in the second circular.

There will be a Language Tutorial on Akkadian, given by Dr Guy Deutcher (Cambridge University).

There will be a Wine Party on the Thursday evening, following Professor Sells' talk.

Enquiries about the LAGB meeting should be sent to the Meetings Secretary (address below). Full details of the programme and a booking form will be included in the Second Circular, to be sent out in early July.

Call for Papers

Members are invited to offer papers for the Meeting; abstracts are also accepted from non-members. The LAGB welcomes submissions on any topic in the field of linguistics; papers are selected on their (perceived) merits, and not according to their subject matter or assumed theoretical framework.

How and when to submit an abstract

Abstracts must be submitted on paper (not by email or by fax). SEVEN anonymous copies of the abstract, plus ONE with name and affiliation, i.e. CAMERA-READY, should be submitted, and should be sent in the format outlined below to the President (address below). You must write your address for correspondence (email or surface) on the BACK of the camera-ready copy. (Even if several authors are named on the front, there should be only one name and address for correspondence.)

Papers for the programme are selected anonymously - only the President knows the name of the authors. Where possible, authors should supply an email address to which the committee's decision may be sent. All decisions will be made by June 28th, and will be communicated by July 3th, so please send an email to the President ( if you have not received your decision by that date.

Abstracts must arrive by June 5th. Abstracts may also be submitted now for the meeting after the next one, but must be clearly marked as such. (In general the abstract deadlines for the autumn and spring meetings are soon after 1st June and 1st January respectively, so an abstract sent to reach the President by that date will always be in time.)

Format of abstracts

Abstracts must be presented as follows: The complete abstract (i.e. the one containing your title and your name) must be no longer than ONE A4 page (21cm x 29.5cm) with margins of at least 2.5cm on all sides. You may use single spacing but type must be no smaller than 12 point. If the paper is accepted the abstract will be photocopied and inserted directly into the collection of abstracts sent out to participants, so the presentation should be clear and clean.

The following layout should be considered as standard:

(title) Optimality and the Klingon vowel shift (speaker) Clark Kent ( (institution) Department of Astrology, Eastern Mars University

The normal length for papers delivered at LAGB meetings is 25 minutes (plus 15 minutes discussion). Offers of longer papers (40 minutes) will also be considered: please explain why your paper requires more time than usual, and whether you would accept a 25-minute slot if the committee cannot offer more. If you request 40 minutes, please write this on each of the anonymous abstracts.

The committee will plan the programme as soon as it has selected the successful abstracts, so please indicate on the anonymous abstracts if you cannot present your paper on either the second or third day of the conference (6th or 7th September). It is very difficult to reschedule papers after the programme has been planned.


Content of abstracts

The following guidelines may be useful:

+ You should clearly describe the paper's general topic. (The topic may be a problem of theory or analysis or set of data which have not previously been analysed.)

+ You should describe your treatment of the topic, and how it relates to previous work on the same topic. (When referring to previous work, it is enough to quote "Author (Date)" without giving full bibliographical details.) It is not acceptable simply to promise Œa solution'. + You should explain how you will justify your treatment, and quote crucial evidence - you must trust the committee (and other conference attenders) not to steal your ideas before you have presented them. If you are taking a stand on a controversial issue, summarise the arguments which lead you to take up this position.

Conference Bursaries

Up to 10 bursaries are available for unsalaried members of the Association (e.g. PhD students) with preference given to those who are presenting a paper. Applications should be sent to the President, and must be received by the deadline for abstracts. Please state on your application: (a) date of joining the LAGB (applicants must have been a member at least since the date of the previous meeting); (b) whether or not you are a student; (c) if a student, whether you receive a normal grant; (d) if not a student, your employment situation. STUDENTS WHO ARE SUBMITTING AN ABSTRACT and who wish to apply for funding should include all the above details WITH THEIR ABSTRACT. The bursary normally covers a significant proportion of the conference expenses and of travel within the UK.

Communications with the membership

Internet home page: The LAGB internet home page is now active at the following address:

Electronic network: Please join the LAGB electronic network which is used

for disseminating LAGB information and for consulting members quickly. It can be subscribed to by sending the message "add lagb" to:

Nominations for speakers: Nominations are requested for future guest speakers; all suggestions should be sent to the Honorary Secretary.

Changes of address: Members are reminded to notify the Membership Secretary of changes of address. An institutional address is preferred; bulk mailing saves postage.

Future Meetings

5-7 April 2001 University of Leeds.

4-6 September 2001 University of Reading.

Spring 2002 (provisional) Edge Hill University College.

The Meetings Secretary would very much like to receive offers of future venues, particularly from institutions which the LAGB has not previously visited.


The LAGB committee

President Professor Andrew Spencer

Department of Language and Linguistics, University of Essex, Wivenhoe Park, COLCHESTER CO4 3SQ.

Honorary Secretary Professor Anna Siewierska

Department of Linguistics, University of Lancaster, LANCASTER LA1 4YW

Membership Secretary Dr. David Willis

Dept. of Linguistics, University of Manchester, MANCHESTER M13 9PL.

Meetings Secretary Dr. Marjolein Groefsema

Dept. of Linguistics, University of Hertfordshire, Watford Campus, ALDENHAM, Herts. WD2 8AT.

Treasurer Dr Wiebke Brockhaus

Dept. of German, University of Manchester, MANCHESTER M13 9PL.

Assistant Secretary Dr. Gillian Ramchand

Linacre College, Oxford University, OXFORD OX1 3JA.