NYUAD Course COREI-AD 58 – Fall 2016
- Class Hours: TuTh 2:40pm – 3:55pm
- Class Location: Saadiyat Campus, Building-Room A4-006
- Office Hours: By appointment
Words, words, words. How do words, as basic units of language, help us communicate our thoughts? How are they internally constructed? And how do they come together to form complex meanings? How are words from different languages similar, and how are they different? Do words reflect or shape our thought? Do they expand or constrain our imagination? This interdisciplinary course explores what words are and how we think of them by bringing together insights and ideas from a number of fields: linguistics, computer science, psychology, sociology, philosophy, history, literature, religion and visual arts to help answer these questions. Students will read materials from a variety of books and articles and discuss them in class, and they will engage in solving language puzzles. Students will learn how to analyze words in terms of their form, function and meaning in context. Class final group project will be to invent a constructed language.
Students will gain knowledge in the different aspects of language from phonology and morphology to semantics and writing systems. The students will understand how different languages and dialects vary in terms of different linguistic aspects. The students will gain understanding in the subtleties of language and power in society. The students will acquire basic computational skills that will help them with processing texts regardless of their majors. The students will gain appreciation of the interconnectedness among the various disciplines studied in the course. Students will improve their writing skills by learning to write grammatically correct and clear prose, to develop well-reasoned and persuasive arguments, and to credit and cite sources accurately. The students will learn how to present their work (constructing narratives, creating slides, projecting their voice, etc.).
- [L&L] Ralph W. Fasold and Jeff Connor-Linton. Eds. An Introduction to Language and Linguistics. Cambridge University Press. 2014.
- [TLG] Guy Deutscher. Through the Language Glass: Why the World looks different in other languages. Metropolitan Books, 2010.
- [LOF] Dan Jurafsky. The Language of Food. W. W. Norton and Company, 2014.
- [NT] Suzette Haden Elgin. Native Tongue. New York: The Feminist Press, 2000.
- My Fair Lady. Dir. George Cukor. Perf. Audrey Hepburn, Rex Harrison, Stanley Holloway. 1964. [Available on NYU Classes]
- The Imitation Game. Dir. Morten Tyldum. Benedict Cumberbatch, Keira Knightley, Matthew Goode. 2014. [Available on NYU Classes]
Slides and handouts
Grading Policy and Components of the Final Grade
- Participation in class (10%)
Linguistic Puzzles (10%)
- Demonstrate through participation in discussions about assigned readings and videos.
Research Paper (15%)
- Eight language puzzles to solve during the semester
Computational linguistics lab assignment (10%)
- Paper comparing two Middle Eastern languages from a third language point of view (4 pages double spaced)
Class Project: Written report (15%), Presentation (10%)
- Basic computational linguistics exercises and linguistic data analysis.
Midterm Exam (15%)Final Exam (15%)
- In a group of three, construct an artificial language. Write a short grammar and dictionary, and create an artifact in the constructed language (calligraphy, artwork, translation, performance, etc.).
Participation and Attendance Policies
Full attendance is required. Absences must be excused. Participation is required in the form of class discussions and class presentations. Every unexcused absence (not pre-cleared with instructor, or not with medical documentation provided to instructor) will automatically result in a 10% reduction in the final grade.
Copying or paraphrasing someone's work, or permitting your own work to be copied or paraphrased, even if only in part, is not allowed, and will result in an automatic grade of 0 for the entire assignment or exam in which the copying or paraphrasing was done. Your grade should reflect your own work. If you believe you are going to have trouble completing an assignment, please talk to the instructor in advance of the due date.
|Lecture||Date||Lecture||Assigned Readings||Assigned On||Due On|
|1||Tue||30-Aug-16||Introduction||(no reading)||Puzzle 1|
|2||Thu||1-Sep-16||Introduction||TLG Prologue & Chomsky Video||Puzzle 2||Puzzle 1|
|4||Thu||8-Sep-16||Phonology||L&L p42-57||Research Paper||Puzzle 2|
|Tue||13-Sep-16||No CLASS. Happy Eid!|
|5||Thu||15-Sep-16||Morphology||L&L p63-80||Puzzle 3|
|7||Thu||22-Sep-16||Lexicon||TLG chapters 1,2,3 & 4||Puzzle 4||Puzzle 3|
|8||Tue||27-Sep-16||Class Project Discussion I: Constructed Languages||The Memorandum (Havel); The Principles of Newspeak (Orwell); The Sixteen Rules of Esperanto Grammar (Harlow); The Palisra Project Talk (Habash); and Browse Omniglot||Conlang Project|
|9||Thu||29-Sep-16||Syntax||L&L p105-128; 136-141||Puzzle 4|
|10||Tue||4-Oct-16||Syntax||TLG chapter 5||Project Group Formation & Abstract|
|11||Thu||6-Oct-16||Semantics||L&L p 149-156; 170-178|
|12||Tue||11-Oct-16||Writing Systems||L&L p413-442||Research Paper Draft|
|13||Thu||13-Oct-16||Writing Systems / Midterm Review||(no reading)|
| ||Tue||25-Oct-16||NO CLASS|
|15||Thu||27-Oct-16||Language Change (+ Midterm Answers)||LOF chapter 3 and 4; L&L p287-315||Puzzle 5|
|16||Tue||1-Nov-16||Language Change ||Research Paper Final|
|17||Thu||3-Nov-16||Language Politics||L&L p383-409; My Fair Lady ||Puzzle 6||Puzzle 5|
|18||Fri||4-Nov-16||Language Politics||(no reading)|
|19||Tue||8-Nov-16||Class Project Discussion II: Constructed Languages||(no reading)||Project Abstract & Short Presentation|
|20||Thu||10-Nov-16||Basics of Programming & Regular Expressions||(no reading; bring laptop to class)||Puzzle 6|
|Tue||15-Nov-16||Basics of Programming & Regular Expressions||(no reading; bring laptop to class)|
|21||Thu||17-Nov-16||Basics of Programming & Regular Expressions||(no reading; bring laptop to class)|
|22||Tue||22-Nov-16||Basics of Programming & Regular Expressions||(no reading; bring laptop to class)||Puzzle 7, CompLing Lab|
|23||Thu||24-Nov-16||Computational Linguistics||L&L chapter 14|
|24||Tue||29-Nov-16||Applications - Cryptography||The Imitation Game||Puzzle 8||Puzzle 7|
|Thu||1-Dec-16||NO CLASS. Happy National Day!|
|25||Tue||6-Dec-16||Applications - Machine Translation||(no reading)|
|26||Thu||8-Dec-16||Word Art + Native Tongue + Final Review||Native Tongue|
Xu Bing. “Book from the Sky.”
|27||Tue||13-Dec-16||Invited Talk - American Sign Language ||Can you read my lips?|
Why do so many Deaf people have trouble with English?
Wikipedia page on William Stokoe
|Conlang Project Draft|
Final Project Presentation
|WA-005 (A3-005) 830-1130||Conlang Project Final Report |
Conlang Project Presentation
CompLing Lab Report