Rachel Nordlinger is a Professor of Linguistics at the University of Melbourne and Director of the Research Unit for Indigenous Language. Rachel’s research is focussed on the description and documentation of Australia’s Indigenous languages and she has worked with a number of Indigenous communities to record and document their traditional languages and to support their efforts in protecting their linguistic heritage. She has published extensively on topics in linguistic typology and syntactic and morphological theory, with particular focus on the challenges posed by the complex grammatical structures of Australian languages. Rachel is a Chief Investigator in the ARC Centre of Excellence for the Dynamics of Language, and Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities.
Morphology-Syntax Interactions In Australian Languages: a Multifaceted Approach
Australian languages are well-known for using complex morphology to encode syntactic relations. Work on these languages has contributed significantly to our understanding of the relationship between morphology and syntax, and the ways in which languages can distribute meaning and function across these two grammatical domains. A big question for our field is what difference these structural choices make for the broader linguistic system. In this paper I draw together research from multiple perspectives, including language acquisition and linguistic processing, to address this bigger question and argue that taking such a multifaceted approach is crucial for our understanding of linguistic diversity and the nature of language.