Dr Oliver Bond

Research Interests

My research covers a wide range of topics related to understanding linguistic diversity and the preservation and description of languages. To date, this includes work on Eleme (Ogonoid, Niger-Congo), Gurung, Gyalsumdo, Manange, Nar-Phu (Bodic, Tibeto-Burman), Archi (Lezgic, Nakh-Daghestanian) and Nuer (Western Nilotic, Nilo-Saharan).

My major research interests lie in:

  • Typology
  • Morphology (especially Paradigm Function Morphology)
  • Syntax (especially Lexical Functional Grammar)
  • Information structure
  • Language documentation and description
  • Niger-Congo languages (especially Eleme and other Benue-Congo languages)
  • Nilo-Saharan (especially Nuer and other Nilotic languages)
  • Tibeto-Burman languages (especially the languages of Manang District, Nepal)
  • Indo-Aryan languages (especially Maithili)

I am currently working on three AHRC-funded research projects exploring issues in morphology and syntax:

Prominent possessors

Prominent possessors are possessors that can control agreement or switch reference. As part of the AHRC-funded project 'Prominent possessors', I am working with Irina Nikolaeva and Sandy Ritchie at SOAS, and Greville G. Corbett in SMG, to determine which factors are important when possessors that are internal to an argument noun phrase take on an unexpectedly prominent role in syntax.

Loss of inflection

As part of the AHRC-funded project 'Loss of inflection' I am working alongside Matthew Baerman, Greville G. Corbett and Helen Sims-Williams in SMG to investigate regularities in the way that inflectional systems are lost over time, using case studies from languages spoken across the world.

Morphological complexity in Nuer

Nuer is a Western Nilotic (Nilo-Saharan) language spoken primarily in South Sudan. As part of the AHRC funded project 'Morphological complexity in Nuer' I am working with Matthew Baerman, Irina Monich and Tatiana Reid in SMG and Bert Remijsen from the University of Edinburgh to investigate the complex system of morphology in this widely spoken but under-described language.

I have recently completed work on two further projects on the nature of argument marking:

Optional ergative case marking

For the British Academy funded project 'Optional ergative case-marking: What can be expressed by its absence?' I examined the factors motivating the presence of ergative case marking in the languages of Manang District, Nepal. A journal article on the origins of differential ergative case marking in Tamangic languages is currently in preparation.

From competing theories to fieldwork

In the AHRC funded project 'From competing theories to fieldwork: The challenge of an extreme agreement system' the project team examined the complex agreement system of Archi (Lezgic, Nakh-Daghestanian) from the perspective of three different syntactic theories, resulting in an edited volume with Oxford University Press:

Archi: Complexities of agreement in cross-theoretical perspective

Fieldwork on languages of Africa and Asia

Although I work on a variety of topics, my background is in Africanist linguistics. Much of my early work describes typologically unusual aspects of the morphosyntax of Eleme (Ogonoid, Benue-Congo), an under-described Niger-Congo language spoken in southeast Nigeria.

Since 2012, my main fieldwork focus has moved to Nepal, where I have been working on four Tibeto-Burman languages - Manang Gurung, Manange, Nar-Phu and Gyalsumdo - which are spoken in the villages of Manang District. This fieldwork is conducted in collaboration with Kristine Hildebrandt (SIUE), Dubi Nanda Dhakal (Tribhuvan University) and other members of the Manang Languages Project.

In the UK, I have also been working with speakers of Nuer (Western Nilotic, Nilo-Saharan) and Maithili (Bihari, Indo-Aryan).

For more on my research, publications and presentations:
http://www.eleme.org.uk/oliverbond/

academia.edu page:
https://surrey.academia.edu/OliverBond

Teaching

I am the convenor for the following UG and PG modules:

Language Diversity (ELI3039)

Global Diversity in Language and Communication (CMCM013)

Introduction to Research Methods: Answering Questions with Evidence (CMCM017)


Departmental Duties

Member of the Research Data Management Steering Group

PhD Coordinator for SMG

Linguistics Pathway Chair for the ESRC South East Network for Social Sciences (SeNSS) Doctoral Training Partnership

Professional associations and committees

I am a member of the following academic organisations:

Association for Linguistic Typology

Linguistics Association of Great Britain

Societas Linguistica Europaea

Contact Me

E-mail:
Phone: 01483 68 9957

Find me on campus
Room: 01 AC 05

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My office hours

Monday 11.30 - 13.30

Tuesday 12.00 - 13.00

Alternatively, please contact me by email to make an appointment.

My research day is Thursday. I am not available for appointments on this day.

Publications

Journal articles

  • Bond O. (2016) 'Negation through reduplication and tone: implications for the Lexical Functional Grammar/Paradigm Function Morphology interface'. Journal of Linguistics, 52 (2), pp. 277-310.

    Abstract

    Morphological marking of negation through verbal reduplication and tone is a typologically rare phenomenon attested in Eleme (Niger-Congo; Nigeria). Using Lexical Functional Grammar (LFG) and Paradigm Function Morphology (PFM) to model first-hand data, I argue that reduplication is not a direct exponent of negation in Eleme, but an asemantic morphomic process, indirectly associated with the presence of a negative polarity feature in LFG’s m(orphological)-structure. While negative verb forms of this kind are typologically unusual, the data can be explained by independently motivated morphology-internal principles. The empirical facts thereby provide support for an m-structure, characterised by its own principles and rules, which interfaces with a bifurcated lexicon that separates content from form.

  • Hildebrandt KA, Dhakal DN, Bond O, Vallejo M, Fyffe A. (2015) 'A sociolinguistic survey of the languages of Manang, Nepal: Co-existence and endangerment'. Journal of Indigenous Nationalities, 14 (6), pp. 106-124.
  • Bond O, Anderson GDS. (2014) 'Aspectual and focal functions of Cognate-Head-Dependent Constructions: Evidence from Africa'. Linguistic Typology, 18 (2), pp. 215-250.

    Abstract

    Cognate-Head-Dependent Constructions (CHDCs) are employed across numerous genera in Africa to signpost alternations in the aspectual characteristics of a predicate or the information focus of a clause. The co-occurrence of a finite lexical verb (the cognate head) and an etymologically related (deverbal) noun or non-finite verb form (the cognate dependent) in such structures is interpreted with reference to the scalar semantics of events and properties. Within this areal typology, CHDCs are employed to indicate either (i) a high point relative to a norm on a semantic scale, or (ii) a conventionally low-ranked possibility, in order to implicitly contrast possible alternatives.

  • Bond O, Chumakina M. (2014) 'Attributives in Archi: A mixed category with multiple bases'. Manuscript under review,
    [ Status: Submitted ]
  • Bond O. (2011) 'Negation in clause linkages'. Language Documentation and Description, 9, pp. 77-120.
  • Bond O. (2010) 'Language documentation and typology'. Language Documentation and Description, 7, pp. 238-261.
  • Bond O. (2010) 'Intra-paradigmatic variation in Eleme verbal agreement'. Studies in Language, 34 (1), pp. 1-35.

    Abstract

    Mismatches in the morphosyntactic features of controllers and targets in the Eleme (Ogonoid, Niger-Congo) participant reference system allow for a subject agreement paradigm in which the person of the grammatical subject is indicated by a verbal prefix, while plural number is marked by a suffix on different targets — either lexical verbs or auxiliaries — based on the person value of the controller. I examine the distribution of Eleme ‘Default Subject’ agreement affixes and the intra-paradigmatic asymmetry found between second-person plural and third-person plural subjects in Auxiliary Verb Constructions (AVC) and Serial Verb Constructions (SVC). I argue that the criteria by which the various agreement affixes select an appropriate morphological host can be modelled in terms of agreement prerequisites even when distributional variation is paradigm internal.

  • Hildebrandt KA, Bond O. (2009) 'WALS in the university classroom'. Linguistic Typology, 13 (1), pp. 181-191.

    Abstract

    The world atlas of language structures (WALS) originally appealed to the linguistics community as a resource for research. However, the relevance of the feature chapters to teaching environments and the user-friendly nature of the Interactive Reference Tool also make it suitable for university classrooms. Based on our experiences using WALS in two typology courses at the University of Manchester and the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), we provide a review of WALS as a teaching and learning tool, including both its successes and frustrations. We note some methodological and technical issues with using WALS in the university classroom, including problems of over- and under-sampling, and a lack of coverage on typological rarities. However, we have also found that WALS has much to offer instructors and students in terms of its breadth of topic coverage, the linkage of the feature chapters with course reading assignments, the wealth of genealogical, geographical, and bibliographic information on individual languages, and the hands-on experience that the Interactive Reference Tool offers students.

  • Bond O. (2009) 'The locative-applicative in Eleme'. Transactions of the Philological Society, 107 (1), pp. 1-30.
  • Bond O. (2009) 'Review of Heine, Bernd, & Nurse, Derek, 2008. A linguistic geography of Africa (Cambridge Approaches to Language Contact). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.'. Journal of Linguistics, 45 (2), pp. 472-476.

Conference papers

  • Austin P. (2011) 'Proceedings of Conference on Language Documentation and Linguistic Theory 3'. London : School of Oriental and African Studies Proceedings of Conference on Language Documentation and Linguistic Theory 3, SOAS, London: Language Documentation and Linguistic Theory 3

    Abstract

    A collection dealing with language documentation and linguistic theory from a conference held at SOAS on 19- 20 November 2011. Papers by Peter Austin, Oliver Bond, Lutz Marten & David Nathan, Balthasar Bickel, Anju Saxena, Anvita Abbi, Cathryn Bartram, Henrik Bergqvist, Martine Bruil, Eliane Camargo & Sabine Reiter, Kearsy Cormier, Jordan Fenlon, Ramas Rentelis, & Adam Schembri, Simeon Floyd & Martine Bruil, Diana Forker, Michael Franjieh & Kilu von Prince, Brent Henderson & Charles Kisseberth, Brent Henderson, Kristine Hildebrandt & Oliver Bond, Dorothea Hoffmann, Lena Karvovskaya, Olesya Khanina & Andrey Shluinsky, Lutz Marten, Andrew Nevins & Denny Moore, J. Joseph Perry, Chaithra Puttaswamy, Oriana Reid-Collins, Sonja Riesberg, Serge Sagna, Antoinette Schapper & Marian Klamer, Stavros Skopeteas, Yuko Sugita, Alex Trueman & Heidi Harley, Stefano Versace & Nigel Fabb, Radu Voica, and Christina M. Willis.

  • Austin P, Bond O, Charette M, Nathan D, Sells P. (2009) 'Table of Contents for Proceedings of Conference on Language Documentation and Linguistic Theory 2'. London : School of Oriental and African Studies Proceedings of Language Documentation & Linguistic Theory 2, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London: Language Documentation & Linguistic Theory 2

Books

  • Bond O, Corbett GG, Chumakina M, Brown D. (2016) Archi: Complexities of agreement in cross-theoretical perspective. Oxford : Oxford University Press

    Abstract

    This book presents a controlled evaluation of three widely practised syntactic theories on the basis of the extremely complex agreement system of Archi, an endangered Nakh-Daghestanian language. Even straightforward agreement examples are puzzling for syntacticians because agreement involves both redundancy and arbitrariness. Agreement is a significant source of syntactic complexity, exacerbated by the great diversity of its morphological expression. Imagine how the discipline of linguistics would be if expert practitioners of different theories met in a collaborative setting to tackle such challenging agreement data - to test the limits of their models and examine how the predictions of their theories differ given the same linguistic facts. Following an overview of the essentials of Archi grammar and an introduction to the remarkable agreement phenomena found in this language, three distinct accounts of the Archi data examine the tractability and predictive power of major syntactic theories: Head-driven Phrase Structure Grammar, Lexical Functional Grammar, and Minimalism. The final chapter compares the problems encountered and the solutions proposed in the different syntactic analyses and outlines the implications of the challenges that the Archi agreement system poses for linguistic theory.

  • Austin PK, Bond O, Nathan D, Marten L. (2011) Proceedings of Conference on Language Documentation and Linguistic Theory 3. London : School of Oriental and African Studies
  • Austin P, Bond O, Nathan D. (2007) Proceedings of Conference on Language Documentation and Linguistic Theory. London : School of Oriental and African Studies

Book chapters

  • Hildebrandt KA, Bond O. (2017) 'Manange'. in Thurgood G, LaPolla R (eds.) The Sino-Tibetan languages Second Edition. London : Routledge , pp. 516-533.
    [ Status: Accepted ]
  • Bond O. (2017) 'Canonical Typology'. in Audring J, Masini F (eds.) The Oxford handbook of morphological theory Oxford : Oxford University Press
    [ Status: In preparation ]
  • Bond O, Chumakina M. (2016) 'Agreement domains and targets. (Chapter 3)'. in Bond O, Corbett GG, Chumakina M, Brown D (eds.) Archi: Complexities of agreement in cross-theoretical perspective Oxford : Oxford University Press , pp. 43-76.
  • Chumakina M, Bond O, Corbett GG. (2016) 'Essentials of Archi grammar. (Chapter 2)'. in Bond O, Corbett GG, Chumakina M, Brown D (eds.) Archi: Complexities of agreement in cross-theoretical perspective Oxford : Oxford University Press , pp. 17-42.
  • Chumakina M, Bond O. (2016) 'Competing controllers and agreement potential. (Chapter 4)'. in Bond O, Corbett GG, Chumakina M, Brown D (eds.) Archi: Complexities of agreement in cross-theoretical perspective Oxford : Oxford University Press , pp. 77-117.
  • Bond O, Corbett GG, Chumakina M . (2016) 'Introduction'. in Bond O, Corbett G, Chumakina M, Brown D (eds.) Archi: Complexities of agreement in cross-theoretical perspective Oxford : Oxford University Press (1), pp. 1-16.
  • Chumakina M, Bond O, Corbett GG. (2016) 'Essentials of Archi grammar. (Chapter 2)'. in Bond O, Corbett GG, Chumakina M, Brown D (eds.) Archi: Complexities of agreement in cross-theoretical perspective Oxford : Oxford University Press , pp. 17-42.
  • Chumakina M, Bond O. (2016) 'Competing controllers and agreement potential. (Chapter 4)'. in Bond O, Corbett GG, Chumakina M, Brown D (eds.) Archi: Complexities of agreement in cross-theoretical perspective Oxford : Oxford University Press , pp. 77-117.
  • Bond O. (2013) 'A base for canonical negation'. in Brown D, Chumakina M, Corbett GG (eds.) Canonical morphology and syntax Oxford : Oxford University Press , pp. 20-47.

    Abstract

    This is the first book to present Canonical Typology, a framework for comparing constructions and categories across languages. The canonical method takes the criteria used to define particular categories or phenomena (eg negation, finiteness, possession) to create a multidimensional space in which language-specific instances can be placed. In this way, the issue of fit becomes a matter of greater or lesser proximity to a canonical ideal. Drawing on the expertise of world class scholars in the field, the book addresses the issue of cross-linguistic comparability, illustrates the range of areas - from morphosyntactic features to reported speech - to which linguists are currently applying this methodology, and explores to what degree the approach succeeds in discovering the elusive canon of linguistic phenomena.

  • Hildebrandt K, Bond O . (2011) 'Negation in Nar'. in Austin P, Bond O, Nathan D, Marten L (eds.) Proceedings of Conference on Language Documentation and Linguistic Theory 3 London : School of Oriental and African Studies , pp. 141-150.
  • Bond O. (2009) 'Mapping negation in conceptual space'. in Austin PK, Bond O, Charette M, Nathan D, Sells P (eds.) Proceedings of Conference on Language Documentation and Linguistic Theory 2 London : School of Oriental and African Studies , pp. 51-60.
  • Bond O. (2008) 'Multiple analytical perspectives of the Eleme Anterior-Perfective'. in (ed.) Current issues in unity and diversity of languages: Collection of papers selected from the CIL 18 [CD-ROM] Seoul : Linguistics Society of Korea , pp. 1480-1496.
  • Bond O. (2007) 'Towards a canon for negation'. in Austin PK, Bond O, Nathan D (eds.) Proceedings of Conference on Language Documentation and Linguistic Theory London : School of Oriental and African Studies , pp. 39-49.
  • Bond O, Anderson GDS. (2006) 'Divergent structure in Ogonoid languages'. in Cover RT, Kim Y (eds.) Proceedings of 31st Annual Meeting of the Berkeley Linguistic Society: Special session on languages of West Africa Berkeley, CA : Berkeley Linguistics Society , pp. 13-24.
  • Bond O. (2006) 'A broader perspective on point of view: Logophoricity in Ogonoid languages'. in Mugane J, Hutchinson JP, Worman DA (eds.) Selected proceedings of the 35th Annual Conference on African Linguistics: African languages and linguistics in broad perspective Somerville, MA : Cascadilla Proceedings Project , pp. 234-244.

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