January 18, 2020

Fallon Presents Research at Georgetown Conference

Associate Professor of Linguistics Paul D. Fallon

Associate Professor of Linguistics Paul D. Fallon

Associate Professor of Linguistics Paul D. Fallon presented a paper, “A Survey of Reduplication Types in Blin” at the 2019 Georgetown University Round Table in Washington, DC, on March 31, 2019. This paper examined the various types of word formation involving the copying of all or part of a word root in both nouns and verbs in the Blin language of Eritrea.

Fallon Presents Research on Cushitic in the Netherlands

Associate Professor of Linguistics Paul D. Fallon

Associate Professor of Linguistics Paul D. Fallon

Paul D. Fallon, Associate Professor of Linguistics, presented the paper, “A ‘Vector Analysis’ of Bender’s Proto-Cushitic” at the 45th annual meeting of the North American Conference on Afroasiatic Linguistics (NACAL), held at the University of Leiden, in the Netherlands, on June 11, 2017. He gave an assessment of ten of the late M. Lionel Bender’s reconstructed roots of Proto-Cushitic, an ancient, reconstructed language of the Horn of Africa.

Fallon Presents at Linguistics Conference

Associate Professor of Linguistics Paul D. Fallon

Associate Professor of Linguistics Paul D. Fallon

Associate Professor of Linguistics Paul D. Fallon presented the paper “Lexical Innovation in Cushitic: Fictitious Family or Fragile Unity?” at the 2017 Annual Meeting of the Linguistic Society of America (LSA), Austin, TX, on Jan. 6, 2017. Using the strict criteria of Orel & Stolbova applied to Christopher Ehret’s reconstruction of Proto-Cushitic, he found that shared lexical innovation alone cannot be used as a diagnostic of Cushitic languages.

Fallon Publishes Research on African Languages

Paul D. Fallon, Associate Professor of Linguistics in the Department of English, Linguistics, and Communication, published his chapter “Coronal ejectives and EthioSemitic borrowing in Proto-Agaw” in the Selected Proceedings of the 44th Annual Conference on African Linguistics, edited by Ruth Kramer, Elizabeth C. Zsiga, & One Tlale Boyer.

Fallon’s paper examines the historical reconstruction of Proto-Agaw (PA, also known as Proto-Central Cushitic), the ancestral mother tongue of the languages Blin, Xamtanga, Kemantney, and Awngi, spoken in Eritrea and Ethiopia. Previous work on Proto-Agaw by David Appleyard claimed that ejective consonants in PA are attributable to borrowings, mostly from neighboring EthioSemitic languages. Expanding his earlier examination of velar (back of tongue) consonants, Fallon argues that coronal (tongue-tip) consonants must also be reconstructed for PA and provides 25 examples of native roots and 19 borrowings, and analyzes 18 other unclear cases. This study contributes to a more precise reconstruction of PA and a deeper understanding of the lexical strata and borrowings between Agaw and EthioSemitic.

The publisher, the Cascadilla Proceedings Project, is both open access online and publisher of library-quality bound printed volumes.

Paul D. Fallon Presents at Linguistics Conference

Paul D. Fallon, Associate Professor of Linguistics, presented a poster at the annual meeting of the Linguistic Society of America, held in Portland, Oregon, from Jan. 8-11, 2015. His poster, “The Qualitative Lexicostatistics of Central Cushitic (Agaw)” applied a new method to analyze the layers of vocabulary and EthioSemitic borrowings in this language family of Eritrea and Ethiopia. As a member of the American Dialect Society, whose meeting was held concurrently, Fallon also participated in the voting of the ADS “Words of the Year” for 2014. The overwhelming winner of 2014 Word of the Year was #blacklivesmatter.

Fallon Serves as Pronouncer in Regional Spelling Bee

Dr. Paul D. Fallon, associate professor of linguistics, served as the pronouncer in the regional spelling bee sponsored by the Free Lance-Star on March 15, 2014 at the James Monroe High School, Fredericksburg.

Fallon Presents Linguistics Research

Paul D. Fallon, Associate Professor of Linguistics, presented a paper at the annual meeting of the Linguistic Society of America, held in Minneapolis from Jan. 2-5, 2014. His talk, “The Tangled Web of Reconstructing Proto-Agaw Dorsal Consonants,” was about the historical reconstruction of the Agaw, or Central Cushitic, languages, which are spoken in the Horn of Africa.