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Section C

Department of Theoretical and Applied Linguistics


LI8: Morphology

This paper is available for the academic year 2017-18.

Li8: Morphology offers a concise overview of morphological variation in the languages of the world, provides an introduction to the descriptive and theoretical models that have been developed to analyze this variation, and summarizes the main sources of experimental and other external evidence for the evaluation of models and the validation of their claims.

The course highlights the substantive ideas about word structure and grammatical organization that underlie current morphological models and identifies any typological biases or independent theoretical commitments. Students are taught standard techniques of morphological analysis and are expected to gain facility in interpreting and evaluating analyses from different theoretical perspectives. A variety of languages are analyzed, and students are offered the opportunity to investigate questions raised in the course in relation to languages with which they are familiar or in which they have an interest.



Li8.1  The demarcation of morphology

Li8.2  Patterns and arrangements

Li8.3  Systems of inflection

Li8.4  Varieties of derivation

Li8.5  Inflectional paradigms, families and series

Li8.6  Derivational families

Li8.7  Morphemic analysis

Li8.8  The agglutinative ideal



Li8.9  Exponence as realization

Li8.10  Syncretism and referral

Li8.11  Autonomous morphology

Li8.12  Implicational models

Li8.13  Morphology as a complex system

Li8.14  Diachrony and explanation

Li8.15  Typological implications

Li8.16  Sources of external evidence

Preparatory reading: 
  • Matthews, P.H. 1991. Morphology. Cambridge University Press.
  • Haspelmath, M. and A. Sims. 2010. Understanding Morphology, 2nd edn. London: Hodder.
  • Aronoff, M. and K. Fudeman. 2010. What is Morphology?, 2nd edn. Wiley.
Teaching and learning: 

16 one-hour lectures, 8 one-hour supervisions.

The paper's Moodle site can be found here. Please contact the department secretary for the enrolment password.


Assessment will be by a three-hour exam at the end of the academic year.

Course Contacts: 
Dr Jim Blevins