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Argument Structure Across Modalities

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Vadim Kimmelman
Roland Pfau
Enoch O. Aboh


Argument structure, that is, the study of how predicates combine with arguments, is a core part of any grammar and any theory of grammar. There are numerous descriptions of argument structure in various languages, typological studies formulating cross-linguistic generalizations, and theoretical approaches touching upon the nature of argument structure. However, neither description nor theoretical analysis of argument structure is complete. A novel contribution to the study of argument structure can be made by looking at the visual modality: that is, by studying sign languages and gesture.
To address theoretical and empirical issues related to argument structure across modalities, a workshop “Argument Structure Across Modalities (ASAM 2018)” has been organized in Amsterdam on February 1-2, 2018, supported by the Dutch Scientific Foundation (NWO). The workshop consisted of 14 selected presentations and 4 invited lectures addressing various topics in argument structure in many spoken and signed languages.
For this special issue of Open Linguistics, we invited the authors of selected presentations at ASAM 2018 to submit a paper presenting their research. The contributions to the special issue will address a variety of topics, such as:

  • Lexical vs. syntactic approaches to argument structure
  • Argument structure of classifier predicates in various sign languages
  • Argument structure in co-speech gesture
  • Semantic basis of transitivity in spoken and signed languages
  • Typological and diachronic aspects of argument structure
  • Argument structure alternations in a theoretical perspective 


Authors are kindly invited to register at our paper processing system at: http://www.editorialmanager.com/opli/ and submit their contribution.
Every manuscript should be clearly marked as intended for this special issue. All papers will go through the Open Linguistics’ high standards, quick, fair and comprehensive peer-review procedure. Instructions for authors are available here. In case of any questions, please contact Guest Editor (v.kimmelman@uva.nl) or Managing Editor (katarzyna.grzegorek@degruyteropen.com).
As an author of Open Linguistics you will benefit from:

  • transparent, comprehensive and fast peer review managed by our esteemed Guest Editor;
  • efficient route to fast-track publication and full advantage of De Gruyter Open e-technology;
  • free language assistance for authors from non-English speaking regions.

The deadline is May, the 1st.