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, movement, and scope-taking
- Alternative Semantics: focus, wh, questions, disjunction
- the syntax of movement, case, and agreement
My work has investigated: Mandarin Chinese; English; Japanese; Mayan: Kaqchikel and Chuj (Guatemala); Austronesian: Squliq Atayal (Taiwan) and Toba Batak (Indonesia); Tibetan; Vietnamese…
See the Projects page for descriptions of projects and downloadable papers.
- November 2016: Theodore Levin will present our joint work on Kaqchikel argument ellipsis at Formal Approaches to Mayan Linguistics 4.
- December 7–9, 2016: I will present “Triggers of fronting in Toba Batak” at the Australian Linguistic Society meeting at Monash University, Melbourne.
- February 2017: The National University of Singapore will be hosting GLOW in Asia XI!
- New paper, October 2016: “Tanglewood untangled” with Hadas Kotek is out in Proceedings of SALT 26. See also our “longer manuscript”.
- Talk, October 2016: Teruyuki Mizuno presented our joint work, “Constraints on constrast sluicing,” at Japanese/Korean Linguistics 24.
- Talk, October 2016: I presented “The locus of Mandarin sentence-final particles and the Final-over-Final Constraint” at the Workshop on Word Order of Heads 中心語詞序研討會 at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, based on my paper “Low sentence-final particles in Mandarin Chinese and the Final-over-Final Constraint,” to appear in Journal of East Asian Linguistics.
- New paper, September 2016: “Even doesn’t move but associates into traces: A reply to Nakanishi 2012”.
- Talk, September/October 2016: I presented “C-T head splitting: Evidence from Toba Batak” at MIT Ling Lunch and the University of Hong Kong.
- Talks, August 2016: I presented “Encoding QUD congruence in Mandarin Chinese” at Theoretical Linguistics at Keio (TaLK) semantics workshop.
- Paper accepted, July 2016: “Unifying Japanese relative clauses: copy-chains and context-sensitivity” with Isaac Gould, accepted for publication in Glossa, pending minor revisions.
- Interview: I was interviewed in the latest issue of Unravel, the accessible linguistics magazine.
- New review, June 2016: My invited book review of Minimalist Interfaces: Evidence from Indonesian and Javanese by Yosuke Sato appeared in Oceanic Linguistics 55(1).
- New paper, May 2016: “Unifying definite and indefinite free relatives: Evidence from Mayan” with Hadas Kotek, to appear in Proceedings of NELS 46.
- 2016–2017 Semester 1: EL5101 Grammatical Analysis