Introduction: Agreement Phenomena in Slavic Languages
This special issue of the Journal of Slavic linguistics is dedicated to papers on agreement phenomena in Slavic languages. The studies presented in this issue were selected from the program of the Agreement Across Borders Conference 2015. The conference was held at the University of Zadar on 15–16 June 2015 as part of the project Coordinated Research of Experimental Morphosyntax of South Slavic Languages (EMSS) in collaboration with one of project partners, the Linguistics Department at the University of Zadar, Croatia. The topic of the conference was agreement as a grammatical phenomenon, covering a variety of languages (e.g., French, German, Greek, Neo-Aramaic, Polish, Russian, South Slavic), a number of categories (e.g., verbs, nouns, adjectives, pronouns, numerals), features, (person, number, and gender), and using a wide range of methodological approaches, reaching from elicited production, speed-accuracy trade off, ERP, and corpus analyses. One of the priorities of the conference was to initiate a discussion of methodological issues in the research of agreement, referring both to theoretical linguistics as well as to experimental psycholinguistics and neurolinguistics. The conference succeeded in crossing the traditional borders of research on agreement by bringing together linguists studying agreement and related phenomena theoretically and those with a particular focus on empirical and especially experimental work. Many contributions pointed to the great challenge in the study of morphosyntactic agreement that lies in the numerous observable instances of inter- and intraspeaker variation in agreement patterns. The conclusion from the meeting was that these can only be adequately accounted for on the basis of new and probably combined methods in empirical research into this phenomenon.
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