Sponsored by the MA/PhD Program in Linguistics at the City University of New York

January 14-15, 2016, at the CUNY Graduate Center, 365 Fifth Ave., New York City

Directions to the Graduate Center


Registration will be on-site at the conference, with a fee of USD$40 to be paid in cash. Registration will begin at 8:00AM on 1/14, with the opening remarks at 8:50AM.

There are branches of Bank of America and Chase on 34th Street/5th Ave., as well as Citibank one block east on 34th Street/Madison Ave.

Invited Speakers

The 2016 Phonology Forum – Conference on Sonority is pleased to announce our invited speakers:

  • Stephen Parker, Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics
  • Matthew Gordon, University of California, Santa Barbara

Please check here for updates on the titles and abstracts for the invited speakers, as well as abstracts from the accepted papers.


Please find the tentative schedule of talks below. Download the PDF version.

Thursday, January 14

8:00-8:50AM Registration and breakfast
8:50-9:00AM Opening Remarks

Session I

9:00-9:30AM Sonority is epiphenomenal – phonotactics in the Onset Prominence Framework

Geoffrey Schwartz, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań, Poland

9:30-10:00AM The Syllable Contact Law in Kyrgyz

Hanzhi Zhu, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

10:00-10:30AM The Nature of Obstruent Loss in Basque Borrowings with Initial OR Clusters

Juliette Blevins, The Graduate Center, CUNY

Ander Egurtzegi, Universidad Compultense de Madrid

10:30-11:00AM Break

Session II

11:00-11:30AM The Sonority Sequencing Principle in Consonant Cluster Perception Revisited

Suyeon Yun, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

11:30-12:00PM When phonetics is not enough: Syllable parsing and laryngeally-complex nuclei

Benjamin Macaulay, The Graduate Center, CUNY

12:00-12:30PM On the basis of sonority restrictions

Iris Berent, Northeastern University

12:30-2:00PM Lunch Break

Session III

2:00-2:30PM Does Gujarati stress avoid the lowest sonority vowel [ə]?

Shu-Hao Shih, Rutgers University

2:30-3:00PM Misinterpretation of tone as stress: Eastern Armenian

Vartan Haghverdi, Rutgers University

3:00-3:30PM Morphologically Derived Environments and SSP Violations: The Case of Lezgi

Elizabeth Pillion, University of Chicago

3:30-4:00PM Sonority restricts laryngealized plosives in Southern Aymara

Paola Cépeda, Stony Brook University

Michael Becker, Stony Brook University

4:00-4:30PM Break

Invited Talk

4:30-6:00PM Quantifying sonority on the fringes of stress

Matthew Gordon, University of California, Santa Barbara

6:30-8:30PM Reception and Dinner



Friday, January 15

8:30-9:00AM Registration and breakfast

Session IV

9:00-9:30AM Mid-vowel alternation in Coratino. An analysis based on Element Theory

Jonathan Bucci, Université de Nice Sophia-Antipolis

9:30-10:00AM An Element Theory approach to vowel reduction and epenthesis

Edoardo Cavirani, Meertens Institute, Amsterdam

10:00-10:30AM On the role of sonority in the verb morphology of Tashlhiyt Berber

Mohamed Lahrouchi, Université Paris 8

10:30-11:00AM Break

Session V

11:00-11:30AM Sonority from an articulatory perspective

Ioana Chitoran, Université Paris Diderot

11:30-12:00PM Reconsidering Higgledy Piggledy Constructions: Morpheme-level Sonority-based Constraints are a No Go, but Analogical Extension is Handy Dandy

Lauren Spradlin, The Graduate Center, CUNY

12:00-12:30PM Deviation from Typological Sonority: Voiceless as Markedness in Bakairi

Geraldo Faria, Vrije University, Amsterdam

12:30-2:00PM Lunch Break

Invited Talk

2:00-3:30PM Reconsidering sonority dispersion and liquid vs. glide offsets: what do the typological facts indicate?

Stephen Parker, Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics

3:30-4:00PM Break

Session VI

4:00-4:30PM Explaining the Role of Sonority in English Schwa Syncope

Stuart Davis, Indiana University

4:30-5:00PM Sonority projection effects: extra syllables without epenthetic vowels

Colin Wilson, Johns Hopkins University

Lisa Davidson, New York University

5:00-5:30PM Relativized Sonority: Nasal adaptivity in syllable phonetics

Martin Krämer, UiT The Arctic University of Norway

Draga Zec, Cornell University

5:30-6:00PM The relationship between sonority and glottal vibration

Megan Risdal, University of California, Los Angeles

Ann Aly, University of California, Los Angeles

Adam Chong, University of California, Los Angeles

Patricia Keating, University of California, Los Angeles

Jesse Zymet, University of California, Los Angeles


Important Dates

31 October 2015 – deadline for abstract submission

1 December 2015 – notification of acceptance

14-15 January 2016 – Conference on Sonority

Contact Information