Forthcoming: Pushing the boundaries: Selected papers from the 51-52 Annual Conference on African Linguistics

James Essegbey   Brent Henderson   Fiona McLaughlin   Michael Diercks  


This volume contains some of the papers there were presented at ACAL 51-52, which was organized virtually at the University of Florida. A couple were accepted for presentation at ACAL 51, which was canceled because of COVID-19. The theme of ACAL 51-52 was African linguistics: pushing the boundaries. There are 18 papers and an introduction: two phonetics papers, five phonology papers, nine syntax papers, one sociolinguistics paper and one typology paper.


  • Introduction
    The pandemic ACAL
  • Supralaryngeal articulation across voicing and aspiration in Yemba vowels
    Mathew Faytak
  • Acoustic analysis of implosives in the Rɨ̀kpàɁ language
    Katie Franich
  • A phonetic and phonological analysis of the Rere vowel height system
    Yaqian Huang
  • Vowel hiatus resolution in Kikuyu
    Mary Paster, Jackson Kuzmik
  • Town Nyanja tonology
    Lee Rickmore
  • Labial-velar to labial sound changes in Luto
    Kenneth S. Olson
  • Where do labio-velars go?
    Mike Cahill
  • On the syntax-prosody interface in Wushi (Babessi)
    Tone pattern and dissimilation
    Liliane Hodieb
  • A unified account of grammatical tone and length in Gã
    Katherine Russell
  • Grammaticalisation of the Kimakunduchi demonstrative into a topic pronoun
    Makoto Furumoto
  • Starting points for tense-aspect analysis and combinatorial preferences
    Ronald Schaefer, Francis Egbokare
  • An initial look at object marink in Cinyungwe
    Crisofia Langa da Camara, Michael Diercks, Madelyn Colantes, Brendan Ly, Jackson Kuzmik, Hannah Lippard
  • Strategies of clausal complementation in Rere
    José Armando Fernández Guerrero
  • Questions in Dan tell us what about the optionality of wh-movement
    Shiori Ikawa
  • Extraposition and word order
    Evidence from Wolof
    Colin P. B. Davis
  • A corpus study of Swahili’s dual complementizer system
    Aron Finholt
  • The concepts of discerned and designed languages and their relevance
    Bert van Pinxteren
  • Vowel systems in Nigerian languages
    Genetic typology versus areal characteristics
    Mathew Harley


James Essegbey, University of Florida, Gainesville

James Essegbey is Professor of African Languages and Linguistics at theUniversity of Florida, Gainesville. His research interests include the description and documentation of endangered languages, particularly the Ghana-Togo Mountain (GTM-Kwa) languages that are spoken in Ghana, Togo and Benin. Essegbey also investigates the syntax and semantics of verbs in the Gbe languages of West Africa.

Brent Henderson, University of Florida

Brent Henderson is Associate Professor of Linguistics at the University of Florida. His research focuses on the syntax and morphology of Bantu languages and the description of Chimiini, an endangered language of Somalia.

Fiona McLaughlin, University of Florida

Fiona McLaughlin is professor of Linguistics and African Languages at the University of Florida. She works on the sociolinguistics of language contact in urban Africa and the phonology and morphology of the Atlantic languages, especially Wolof, Sereer and Pulaar. She has taught at universities in Niger and Senegal and is former director of the West African Research Center in Dakar.

Michael Diercks, Pomona College

Michael Diercks is Associate Professor of Linguistics and Cognitive Science at Pomona College. His research focuses on the morphosyntax of East African languages. He is part of an ongoing project documenting four Luyia languages spoken in Western Kenya, and works on syntactic theory having to do with licensing of noun phrases, agreement, and the intersection of information structure and syntax.


October 25, 2023
LaTeX source on GitHub
Cite as
Essegbey, James, Henderson, Brent, McLaughlin, Fiona & Diercks, Michael (eds.). Forthcoming. Pushing the boundaries: Selected papers from the 51-52 Annual Conference on African Linguistics. (Contemporary African Linguistics). Berlin: Language Science Press.


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