I am an Assistant Professor in Linguistics at the National University of Singapore (Department of English Language & Literature). I study the structure of sentences (syntax) and how these structures map to meaning (semantics). Much of my work is based on fieldwork on understudied and endangered languages. I received my Ph.D. from MIT Linguistics in 2014. In a previous life, I was active in the Mozilla (Firefox) and WordPress open-source communities.
Areas of interest
- syntax and semantics of focus and movement
- the syntax of case, agreement, and movement
In previous work I have investigated: Mandarin Chinese; English; Japanese; Mayan: Kaqchikel and Chuj (Guatemala); Austronesian: Squliq Atayal (Taiwan) and Batak Toba (Indonesia); Tibetan; Vietnamese…
See the new Projects page for descriptions of projects and downloadable papers.
- January 2016: I will be at LSA 2016. Hadas Kotek and I will present “Unifying definite and indefinite free relatives: Evidence from Mayan” on Thursday.
- Paper accepted, November 2015: “Clausal comparison without degree abstraction in Mandarin Chinese” for NLLT. Minor revisions pending.
- New paper, October 2015: “Even-NPIs in Dharamsala Tibetan” with Hadas Kotek. See also the associated slides from the 37th Linguistic Society of India meeting (ICOLSI 37).
- Talk, October 2015: “Unifying definite and indefinite free relatives: Evidence from Mayan” with Hadas Kotek, at NELS 46.
- New paper, September 2015: “Non-interrogative wh-constructions in Chuj” with Hadas Kotek.
- Talk, September 2015: “The semantics of the Mandarin focus marker shì”, at European Association of Chinese Linguistics 9.
- New paper, September 2015: “Relative pronoun pied-piping in English non-restrictive relatives” with Hadas Kotek. See also our related CLS paper and Sinn und Bedeutung talk.
- New paper, August 2015: “Ergativity and Austronesian-type voice systems” with Ted Levin and Coppe van Urk, to appear in the Oxford Handbook of Ergativity
- New paper, June 2015: “Minimality and focus-sensitive adverb placement” to appear in Proceedings of NELS 45, which complements my longer manuscript “In defense of Closeness: focus-sensitive adverb placement in Vietnamese and Mandarin Chinese.”
- New paper, May 2015: “Low sentence-final particles in Mandarin Chinese and the Final-over-Final Constraint.” Comments welcome!