Why an Icelander Can Give a Tourist Directions but Cannot Give Directions to a Tourist

Courtesy photo of Cherlon Ussery

ASU's Interdisciplinary Committee on Linguistics (ICOL) presents this talk on Icelandic morphology and syntax by Cherlon Ussery of Carleton College.

Long before Iceland became one of the world's most popular tourist destinations, Icelandic was known throughout the linguistics community for its complex morphological patterns. In this talk, Ussery explores the morphological and syntactic patterns that are particular to ditransitive verbs in Icelandic and Faroese (spoken in the Faroe Islands). Although Icelandic and Faroese are grouped together as Insular Scandinavian languages, the differences between the two languages are particularly pronounced in constructions with verbs like give, offer, send, tell and throw. Ussery discusses theoretical implications of the patterns in each language, as well as ongoing corpus research and experimental work designed to systematically capture the differences between Icelandic and Faroese.

Cherlon Ussery is an associate professor of linguistics at Carleton College in Minnesota, where she has worked since completing her dissertation in 2009 at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Professor Ussery's research focuses on the interaction between syntax, morphology and semantics, primarily in Icelandic. She is currently a principal investigator on the project Ditransitives in Insular Scandinavian, which is funded by the Icelandic Research Fund, Rannís.

Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College
Katie Bernstein
Jan 24 2020 - 2:00pm
Ross-Blakley Hall Room 117
Tempe campus