Dialects & Dialogues
15th Annual Interdisciplinary German Studies Conference

The conference aims to explore historical, (pop-)cultural, political, linguistic, and literary movements concerning the notions of dialect and German.

Like a puzzle, the German language is made up of many pieces. Some pieces are easily recognizable—creating the borders of the image—, while others don’t seem to fit at first glance, and still others have been scattered or lost on the floor. No piece alone represents the entire picture, rather the dialogue of juxtaposition and interaction of all the varieties create the German language.

Questions that will be addressed include: What role has dialect played in deciding history? What is the relationship between communicator and dialect? How does an author play with dialect? To what extent do people interpret dialect as a social marker? How do dialects simultaneously create a dialogue of difference and commonality? How do we measure what is and what isn’t dialect?

This year's Germanic Lingustics Roundtable will take place at The Faculty Club, University of California, Berkeley.

Friday, April 7

Morning Session: Eugene Green (Boston Univ.)

  • 8:30 a.m. Alexander Onysko (Univ. of  Innsbruck/Macalester College): "Gender Assignment of Anglicisms in German"
  • 8:55 a.m. Donald Steinmetz (Augsburg College): "Nouns with the Prefix ge-: A Cross-linguistic Study in Gender Assignment"
  • 9:20 a.m. Ilona Vandergriff (San Francisco State Univ.): "Content and Speech Act Conditionality: A Closer Look at Evidence from German"
  • 9:45 a.m. Enrique Mallen (Texas A & M Univ.): "Jackendoff’s Parallel Architecture, Picasso’s Cubism and Stein’s Language Poetry"
  • 10:10 a.m. Ann-Marie Swensson & Jurgen Hering (Univ. of Gotebörg): "On the Ambiguity of Germanic burg"
  • 10:35 a.m. Elisabeth Leiss (Univ. of Munich): "Case, Aspect, and (In)definiteness Effects.The Case of the Verbal Genitive in the History of German"
  • 11:00 a.m. Werner Abraham (Univ. of Vienna): "The Cartography of Prepositions. The Event-typological Strengthening of the Traditional Concept of Valence and its Demolition under P-government"

12:00-1:00 p.m. Lunch

Afternoon Session: Robert G. Hoeing (SUNY Buffalo)

  • 1:00 p.m. Marc Pierce (Univ. of Texas): "Onset Well-formedness in Germanic"
  • 1:25 p.m. Kerstin Schwabe (ZAS Berlin): "On the Directive Force of German dass-clauses"
  • 1:50 p.m. John H. G. Scott (Indiana Univ.): "Formalizing Rhotacization (/z/>/r/) in NWGmc.: Norse Runic Evidence"
  • 2:15 p.m. Tonya Kim Dewey (UC Berkeley): "Case Variation in Gothic Absolute Constructions"
  • 2:40 p.m. Hans-Martin Gaertner (ZAS Berlin) and Markus Steinbach (Univ. of Mainz) "A Skeptical Note on the syntax of Speech Acts and Point of View"
  • 3:05 p.m. Ingo Reich (Univ. of Tübingen): "From Discourse to 'Odd Constructions': On Asymmetric Coordination and Subject Gaps in German"
  • 3:30 p.m. Eugene Green  (Boston Univ.): "Stative Verbs in Old English Poetry"
  • 3:55 p.m. Catherine Hester, Chris Little, Meredith Kolar, Joellyn Palomaki, Timothy Price, Aida Sakalauskaite, Jason Whitt (UC Berkeley): "BAG 9: Toward the Architecture of the Apology"

7:00 p.m. Dinner (Faculty Club: Howard Lounge)

Anatoly Liberman (Univ. of Minnesota): “The Operation of Verner’s Law”

Saturday, April 8 (Faculty Club: Seaborg Room)

Morning Session: John Ole Askedal (Univ. of Oslo)

  • 8:25 a.m. Jason Whitt (UC Berkeley): "The Cognitive Underpinnings of the German Modal Verbs: A Diachronic Perspective"
  • 8:50 a.m. Michel van der Hoek (Univ. of Minnesota) "The Dutch Diminutive and Palatalization in West Germanic"
  • 9:15 a.m. Kurt Goblirsch (Univ. of South Carolina): "Old High German kx and the Mechanism of Germanic Consonant Shifts"
  • 9:40 a.m. Craig Callender (Univ. of South Carolina): "Sonority, Consonant Length and West Germanic Gemination"
  • 10:05 a.m. Karen Sullivan (UC Berkeley): "MEMBER FOR MEMBER Category Metonymy in Norse Skaldic Kennings"
  • 10:30 a.m. Thomas F. Shannon (UC Berkeley): "Infinitive Doubling in Yiddish: An Enigma for the Germanist?"
  • 10:55 a.m. Ekkehard König (Freie Univ. Berlin): "Towards a Typology of Reciprocal Constructions: Focus on Germanic"

12:00-1:00 p.m. Lunch

Afternoon Session: Enrique Mallen (Texas A & M Univ.)

  • 1:00 p.m. Robert G. Hoeing (SUNY Buffalo): "Relativization, Predication, Tense, and Aspect in German and Selected Non-IE Languages"
  • 1:25 p.m. Bill J. Darden (Univ. of Chicago): "Gothic ogs and the PIE Pluperfect"
  • 1:50 p.m. Prisca Augustyn (Florida Atlantic Univ.): "Language Game and Language Play: Saussure’s chess metaphor, Wittengenstein’s Sprachspiegel, and the Notion of play in René Thom’s Catastrophe Theory"
  • 2:15 p.m. Murielle Etoré (Univ. of Calabria): "Why is it so Difficult for Students to Deal with German Rightheaded (anruf-) and English Leftheaded (call up) Complex Verbs?"
  • 2:40 p.m. Hans Martin Gaertner (ZAS Berlin): "From German Quirk to Universal Tendency: A Speculation on (the Absence of Wh- Infinitives"
  • 3:05 p.m. Claudia Bucheli and Guido Seiler (Univ. of Zürich): "Is Syntax Different? Evidence from Swiss German"
  • 3:30 p.m. Irmengard Rauch (UC Berkeley): "To What Extent Does Old Frisian Have Noun Gender?"
  • 3:55 p.m. John Ole Askedal (Univ. of Oslo): "The Potential subjunctive in Germanic and the Reportive subjunctive of Modern German: A Case of Structural Cyclicity?"

4:30 p.m. Cocktails

The Berkeley Germanic Linguistics Roundtable is supported by the University of California, Berkeley Center for German and European Studies and by the Max Kade Foundation, Inc.

The BTWH (Berkeley-Tübingen-Wien-Harvard) Working Group announces its conference on

Media and Mobility

What is the relationship between media and mobility? Can media create virtual mobility? Can we travel through media? Is it actual mobility or a sense of mobility conveyed through the media that creates a "global citizen"? How have various types of media changed the way we view and negotiate space? And how has increased mobility changed our relationship to media? Has it increased individuality and communities based on common interests spread throughout the world in which geographical location no longer plays a role? Or is geographical location just as important as ever as we see that who controls access to information controls the information itself?

BTWH is an international Townsend Center working group that deals with questions of German modernity.

Ossi Wessi: Ossi Wessi

The conference aims to explore historical, cultural, political, linguistic and literary movements occurring in and around the landscape of German Reunification.

In January 1989, Erich Honecker stated, “Die Mauer wird in 50 und auch in 100 Jahren noch bestehen bleiben, wenn die dazu vorhandenen Gründe noch nicht beseitigt worden sind.” On November 9, 1989 the Berlin Wall came down and Europe as we knew it ceased to exist. The turmoil of the succeeding 17 years has brought many changes. From the fall of the Russian communist regime to the creation of the EU, the world has become a different place.

Questions that will be addressed include: How has language changed? In what way has German literature and/or its reception been effected by the fall of the wall? What effects did Nov. 1989 have on the political landscape of Germany and/or nations behind the iron curtain? How has the landscape of film in Germany changed?

Finding the Foreign 2005

Dwinelle 370

This conference aims to explore constructions of the ‘foreign’ in the German-speaking context throughout the centuries. Etymology reveals that ‘friend’ was once related to family; ‘foe’ was related to strife. Situated between friend and foe one finds the stranger or the foreigner – ‘der Fremde’- potentially inspiring curiosity or fear, potentially a friend or a foe, potentially a source of insight about oneself.

Who or what is foreign? What tropes or techniques create a sense of the foreign, and how do they serve to position the foreign on the spectrum from friend to foe? How have such discourses been countered by minority voices, hybrid cases, or the uncanny within oneself to destabilize or re-appropriate these categories? What does the construction of the foreign reveal about the formation of national, communal, and personal identities? How is the foreign affected by globalization and migration?

The conference takes place in 370 Dwinelle, Saturday March 12th, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and from 9:30 am-12 p.m. on Sunday, March 13th.

Organized by the UC Berkeley German Department and the Goethe-Institute – San Francisco, in collaboration with DAAD, the Institute for European Studies, and the Townsend Center for the Humanities.

Goodbye Germany? Migration, Culture and the Nation State
October 28-30 2004

Organized by the UC Berkeley German Department and the Goethe Institut – San Francisco, in collaboration with The Center for Middle Eastern Studies, The Institute for European Studies, The Pacific Film Archive, and The Townsend Center for the Humanities.

Over the past half-century, mass migrations have challenged and changed nation states on a global scale. Contemporary German controversies epitomize many of the conflicts ascribed to immigration. As “guest workers” and asylum seekers stay to become residents, the concept of a national community based on ancestral lineage and cultural heritage has been called into question. For some, the presence of roughly eight million foreign-born, including new immigrants from Eastern Europe, Africa, and Asia, spells the end of Germany as they know it. In their view, Germany is not America – it will never be a “country of immigration.” For others, a multi-ethnic Germany means cosmopolitan openness, multicultural diversity, and a chance to make good on the country’s dark history in the early half of the last century. For them, Germany’s new face is already an undeniable fact.

Language and media are of central importance to these debates since cultural representations of home and mobility can complicate old binaries of “us and them” and “here and there.”

The Department of German at the University of California, Berkeley, is proud to announce an international conference that addresses the cultural friction points that arise from transnational migration in postindustrial societies. UC Berkeley’s diverse campus (and its history of contentious debates) will provide an ideal location for discussion of the new multi-ethnic Germany as well as the borders of German studies itself.

This international conference is part of an ongoing research project initiated by Berkeley’s Department of German and sponsored by the Center for German and European Studies. The project includes an archive on German multiculturalism and a forthcoming sourcebook. In the conference we want to address the cultural friction points that arise from transnational migration in postindustrial societies. We also want to reflect on the consequences of multilingual and multilocal stories for histories of national cultures as they are taught at American universities. UC Berkeley’s diverse campus (and its history of contentious debates) will provide an ideal location for discussing the new multiethnic Germany as well as the borders of German studies itself.

The Faculty Club University of California, Berkeley

Friday, April 2

8:00 a.m. Registration (Faculty Club: Seaborg Room)

Morning Session: Rex A. Sprouse (Indiana Univ.)

  • 8:30 a.m. John Durbin (Indiana Univ.): "Are Modals a Form of Passivization? Evidence from Dutch moeten/mogen + van"
  • 8:55 a.m. Donald Steinmetz (Augsburg College): “The Germanic Gender Shift and its Consequences in Yiddish: Order in the Chaos?”
  • 9:20 a.m. Ana Krzic (Indiana Univ.): “Pronoun Address System in German”
  • 9:45 a.m. Charles M. Barrack (Univ. of Washington): “Grimm’s Law and Verner’s Law: From Typology to Trajectory”
  • 10:10 a.m. Mark Southern (Middlebury College): “Metonymic and Linguistic Inheritances in Old Saxon: Betrayal, Protection, Death, and Words as Power”
  • 10:35 a.m. Suin Shin (UC Berkeley): “Why Germans are Rude. Or not? - Politeness Strategies in Language: A Contrastive Study of German, English and Korean”
  • 11:00 a.m. Ulrich Busse (Univ. of Halle/Wittenberg): “The Impact of Lexical Borrowing from English on German and Its Treatment in Selected Dictionaries”

12:00-1:00 p.m. Lunch

Afternoon Session: John Ole Askedal (Univ. of Oslo)


  • 1:00 p.m. Hans C. Boas (Univ. of Texas): “Texas German – or – The Dialect that Never Happened”
  • 1:25 p.m. Eugene Green (Boston University): “The Subjunctive Mood and Modal Auxiliary in Old English Poetry”
  • 1:50 p.m. Tonya Kim Dewey (UC Berkeley/Univ. of Iceland): “V2 in West Germanic: Syntax vs. Phonology”
  • 2:15 p.m. Thaddeus G. Meyer (Indiana Univ.): “The Transitional Transcriptions Anew: Runic Evidence for the Phonemicization of i – umlaut”
  • 2:40 p.m. Robert G. Hoeing (SUNY Buffalo): “Talking Heads and Relatives”
  • 3:05 p.m. Guido Seiler (Stanford University): “On the Development of the Bavarian Quantity System”
  • 3:30 p.m. Dorian Roehrs,(Indiana Univ.): “German ein jeder as a Late Compound”
  • 3:55 p.m. Johan van der Auwera (Univ. of Antwerp): “Flemish Negative Indefinites: Micro-and Macrovariation”

7:00 p.m. Dinner (Faculty Club: Howard Lounge)

Enrique Mallen (Texas A&M Univ.): “A German(‘s) Grammar of Cubism: Pablo Picasso and Daniel-Heinrich Kahnweiler”

Saturday, April 3

Morning Session (Seaborg Room): Robert G. Hoeing (SUNY Buffalo)

  • 8:30 a.m. Marc Pierce (Univ. of Michigan): “Syllable Weight and Vowel Lengthening in Modern Faroese”
  • 8:55 a.m. Vera Lee-Schoenfeld (UC Santa Cruz): “Possessor Raising: A Diagnostic for Restructuring”
  • 9:20 a.m. Christopher D. Sapp (Indiana Univ.): “Verb Placement in Subordinate Clauses in the History of German”
  • 9:45 a.m. Andre Nündel (Rutgers University): “Case Attraction as a Consequence of DP Structure”
  • 10:10 a.m. Thomas F. Shannon (UC Berkeley): “Oy Vey, Maatjie: More Drift in Germanic?”
  • 10:35 a.m. Santeri Palviainen (Harvard Univ.): “Baltic-Finnic Evidence for Germanic Final Syllables”
  • 11:00 a.m. Marga Reis (Univ. of Tübingen): “Modals, so-called Semi-modals, and Grammaticalization in German”

12:00-1:30 p.m. Lunch

Afternoon Session: Charles M. Barrack (Univ. of Washington)

  • 1:30 p.m. Heiko Wiggers (Univ. of Texas): “The Prestige Shift of Low German”
  • 1:55 p.m. Bay Area German Project (UC Berkeley): “Emotion, Gesture, Language”
  • 2:20 p.m. John Ole Askedal (Univ. of Oslo): “Intercategorial Coordination in German NPs”
  • 2:45 p.m. Dorian Roehrs & Rex Sprouse (Indiana Univ.): “The Three Genitival Declensions of Proper Names in Modern Standard German: Some Morphosyntactic Nuts”
  • 3:10 p.m. Irmengard Rauch (UC Berkeley) “Muscular Gothic II: Template Morphology”
  • 3:35 p.m. Joseph Voyles (Univ. of Washington): “Hittite and Proto-Indo-European”


The Berkeley Germanic Linguistics Roundtable is supported by the University of California Berkeley Center for German and European Studies through a Daimler-Chrysler/Deutsche Bank Grant, and by the Max Kade Foundation, Inc.

Germany and the Imagined East
2004 German Studies Conference
UC Berkeley Townsend Center, 220 Stephens Hall


March 13, 2004
8:00-9:00 a.m. Breakfast
9:00-9:15 a.m. Introductory Remarks (Lee M. Roberts, UC Berkeley)
Panel I: Philosophical Views on the East (Moderator: Gabriel Trop, UC Berkeley)
  • 9:15-9:40 a.m. Tomislav Zelic (Columbia): “Habermas and His Balkans”
  • 9:40-10:05 a.m. Nicholas Martin (University of St. Andrews): “Inviting Barbarism: Nietzsche’s Will toRussia”
  • 10:05-10:30 a.m. Jeffrey Librett (Loyola University): “Friedrich Schelling’s Defense of ‘Oriental’ Pantheism: From the Freiheitsschrift to the Philosophie der Mythologie”

10:30-10:45 a.m. Coffee break

Panel II: Eastern “Germanies” (Moderator: Sabrina Rahman, UC Berkeley)

  • 10:45-11:10 a.m. Wendy Graham (IndianaUniversity): “Dis-membering and Re-membering the GDR: Material Culture and East Germany’s Self-Reflexive Memory in Zonenkinder and Good bye, Lenin!”
  • 11:10-11:35 a.m. Michael Huffmaster (UC Berkeley): “Making New Enemies: Slavs Replace Turks in G.W. Pabst’s The Treasure”
  • 11:35 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Sarah Painitz (University of Virginia): “Liegt Böhmen noch am Meer? Ingeborg Bachmann’s Landscapes as Utopian Constructs”

12:00-1:30 p.m. Lunch

Panel III: Eastern Europe (Moderator: Sarah Bailey, UC Berkeley)

  • 1:30-1:55 p.m. Marjanne E. Goozé (University of Georgia): “Counteracting Stereotypes: The Cultural Mission to the East (Halb-Asien) and Jewish Masculinity in the Works of Karl Emil Franzos”
  • 1:55-2:20 p.m. Maria S. Grewe (Columbia): “Imagining the East: Minority Literature in Germany and Exoticist Discourses in Literary Criticism”
  • 2:20-2:45 p.m. Anne Dwyer (UC Berkeley): “Kazabaika, Kantschuk, and Baschlyk: Ethnic and Geopolitical Scenarios in Leopold von Masoch’s Venus in Furs”

2:45-3:00 p.m. Coffee break

Panel IV: The Near East & Nearby (Moderator: David Gramling, UC Berkeley)

  • 3:00-3:25 p.m. Didem Ekici (University of Michigan): “Expressionism, Orientalism,  Imperialism: Bruno Taut’s ‘House of Friendship’ Competition Proposal”
  • 3:25-3:50 p.m. Azadeh Yamini-Hamedani (UC Berkeley): “Why Zarathustra?”
  • 3:50-4:15 p.m. Sukanya Kulkarni (UPenn): “‘Crouching Tiger’, Hidden Desire: Exotic Danger in Thomas Mann’s Tod in Venedig and Waldemar Bonsels’ Indienfahrt”

6:00-8:00 p.m. Conference dinner

March 14, 2004

8:00-9:00 a.m. Breakfast

Panel V: The Far East (Moderator: Lee M. Roberts, UC Berkeley)

  • 9:00-9:25 a.m. Richard Ascarate (UC Berkeley): “‘So that Asia can become great”: The Representation of Eastern Cultures in Fritz Lang’s Die Spinnen”
  • 9:25-9:50 a.m. Francesca Draughon (Stanford): “The Orientalist Reflection: Temporality, Reality and Illusion in Gustav Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde”
  • 9:50-10:15 a.m. Hoi-Eun Kim (Harvard): “German Physicians as ‘Ethnographers’ on Japanese Culture: Activities of German Physicians in Deutsche Gesellschaft für Natur- und Völkerkunde Ostasiens, Tokyo, 1873-1914”
  • 10:15-10:40 a.m. Silke Schade (University of Cincinnati): “Rewriting Identities, Bodies, and Borders: Yoko Tawada’s Opium für Ovid”

10:40-10:55 a.m. Coffee break

Keynote Speaker
  • 10:55-11:00 a.m. Introduction of Keynote Speaker
  • 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. Reiko Tachibana (Penn State): “German-Japanese Literary Connections”
  • 12:00-12:30 p.m. Roundtable Discussion

This conference was made possible through generous support from The Doreen B. Townsend Center for the Humanities, The Institute of European Studies, and the German Department of the University of California, Berkeley.



The Nineteenth Meeting of the Semiotic Circle of California will be held in the Faculty Club of the University of California at Berkeley on Saturday, January 24, 2004. Please submit the information below by December 15, 2003, for participation in the meeting. As customary, the meeting will be an open topic research paper meeting.

Reservations for housing may be made directly to the Faculty Club at (510) 642-1993/(510) 540-5678 or to the Hotel Durant at (510) 845-8981.


_____I wish to attend.
_____I wish to present a paper.

Please submit a 100 word abstract (+DISK) by 12/15/03 and include your NAME, AFFILIATION, ADDRESS, E-MAIL, and PHONE.

Send to:
BERKELEY, CA 94720-3243

PHONE: (510)642-2003; PHONE/FAX: (707)746-7480; E-MAIL: