I am an Associate Professor at the Department of Linguistics at Ghent University. I work on semantics, pragmatics, and syntax of natural language elements that relate utterances to context, such as determiners, pronouns, person agreement markers, and wh-words, as well as information structure-related aspects of word order. I use formal theoretical and computational methods to model their use and their role in language change.
I received my PhD in Linguistics from McGill University in 2014 with a dissertation "Grammatical Ingredients of Definiteness" (advised by Bernhard Schwarz), after which I worked as a postdoctoral research fellow first with Benoît Crrabé and Sophie Prévost at Laboratoire de linguistique formelle (CNRS, Université Paris Diderot) and then with Liliane Haegeman and Anne Breitbarth at Research Foundation Flanders and Ghent University.
I'm the PI in an ERC-funded project CAUSALITY which investigates drivers of language change and conservativity using West-Germanic historical treebanks and computational modeling.
in press. Full vs. clitic vs. bound determiners. Oxford Handbook of Determiners, ed. S. Armoskaite and M. Wiltschko. Pre-print.
2022 (with Anne Carlier) The evolution of possessive phrases and the rise of DP in French, Spanish, and Portuguese. Glossa. Paper.
2020. Existential possession in Meadow Mari. Approaches to Predicative Possession. The View from Slavic and Finno-Ugric, ed. G. Dalmi, J. Witkos, and P. Ceglowski. London: Bloomsbury, 162–185. Chapter.
2020 (with Anne Carlier) Between demonstrative and definite: A grammar competition model of the evolution of French l-determiners Canadian Journal of Linguistics 65 (3). Paper.
2020 (with Anne Carlier) Givenness marking in a mixed system: Constituent order vs. determiners. Quantification and Scales in Change (Language Science Press), ed. R. Gergel and J. F. Watkins, 203-233. Paper.
2019 (with Benoît Crabbé and Sophie Prévost) Agreement syncretization and the loss of null subjects: quantificational models for Medieval French. Language Variation and Change 31(3), 275–301. Paper.
2019 (with Bernhard Schwarz and David Oshima) Factive islands from necessary blocking. Proceedings of Semantics and Linguistic Theory (SALT) 29, ed. K. Blake, F. Davis, K. Lamp, and J. Rhyne, 529–548. Paper.
2019 (with Anastasiia Voznesenskaia) An emerging veridical complementizer to čto in Russian. Festschrift for Liliane Haegeman. Paper.
2018 (with Benoît Crabbé and Sophie Prévost) Effects of text form on grammatical changes: A treebank study. Diachronica 35(3), 394–429. Paper.
Recent conference presentations and invited talks
(invited) Bare nouns across time and the determiner systems. Workshop “Bare nouns” of the DFG network “Definiteness across domains”. University of Wuppertal, March 4–6, 2023. Slides.
(invited) Syntactic changes tracking morphological: A language change approach to implicational universals. Department of Linguistics, University of Vienna, January 26, 2023. Slides.
(invited, with Anne Carlier) Demonstratives and strong definites: two ways to point to a situation. Workshop “Two kinds of definites” of the DFG-funded network "Definiteness across domains". University of Potsdam, December 15–16, 2022. Slides.
(with Anne Carlier) Situational semantics of demonstratives and the definiteness cycle. Formal Diachronic Semantics (FoDS7). Budapest, Hungary, November 10–11, 2022. Slides.
(poster) Capturing historical causality via game-theoretic interactions. Machine Learning and the Evolution of Language (ml4evolang), JCoLE Workshop. Kanazawa, Japan, September 5–8, 2022. Slides.
(invited) What can historical treebanks teach us about noun phrase semantics? Research Training Group Nominal Modification. Goethe Universität Frankfurt am Main, July 5, 2022.
(invited) The semantics of the distal/proximal features and the diachronic competition between demonstrative and strong definite interpretations. Workshop “Two kinds of definites” of the DFG Research Network Definiteness across domains. Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, June 28– July 1, 2022.
(with Anne Carlier) Pragmatic drivers of the rise of determiners: Game-theoretic simulations poster vs. historical French. Diachronic Generative Syntax (DiGS) 22. University of Konstanz, May 19–22, 2021. Poster.
(with Anne Carlier) Simulating the role of pragmatic reasoning in word order changes. Formal Diachronic Semantics 4. The Ohio State University, November 15-16, 2019. Slides.