Daniel Erker

Assistant Professor, Spanish and Linguistics

Daniel Erker
Email: danerker@bu.edu
Web: http://blogs.bu.edu/danerker/
Web: http://ling.bu.edu/people/erker
Office phone: 617-353-6211
Office number: 501A
Office address: 718 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, MA 02215
Office hours: Fall 2014: T 11:30-1; R 3:30-5 (or other times, by appointment)

[See also his faculty profile in Romance Studies. Please note that Prof. Erker's office is located in 718 Commonwealth Avenue.]

BA, Marquette University
MA, Graduate Center of the City University of New York
PhD, New York University

Professor Erker teaches courses in general linguistics and Spanish linguistics. His research interests include language variation, contact, and change, acoustic and articulatory phonetics, Spanish in the United States, the languages of Latin America, and the evolution of human language.

Professor Erker is currently developing the Spanish in Boston Research Project, a community based study which examines how Spanish is spoken in the greater Boston area.

His publications include 'The Role of Lexical Frequency in Syntactic Variability' (with Gregory Guy, Language, 88:3) and 'Hiatus resolution in American English: The case against glide insertion' (with Lisa Davidson, forthcoming in Language). For access to pre-publication drafts of these and other papers, please visit Professor Erker's website: http://blogs.bu.edu/danerker/.

Listen to Professor Erker's interview on Boston's NPR affiliate, WGBH:


Courses

Fall 2014

Course number Course title Section Instructor Days Time Room

CAS LS/LX 507

The Sounds of Spanish

web A1 Erker TR 9:30-11 CAS 323B
(Conducted in Spanish) The goal of this course is to introduce students to the linguistic analysis of speech, with a focus on the Spanish language. We examine the vowels and consonants of Spanish from the perspective of articulatory and acoustic phonetics. In addition, the course introduces core concepts in phonological analysis, surveying the phonemic inventory and phonological organization of Spanish. We also investigate a range of regional variation demonstrated by so-called ‘dialects’ of Spanish, with an emphasis on the historical and social significance of such variation in Spain, Latin America, and the United States. In summary, this course aims to examine the sounds of Spanish as physical, mental, and social phenomena. [Prereq: One 300-level Spanish course and CAS LX 250 or consent of instructor]
  • If you are trying to register for this course as CAS LS 507 and it appears full, you can just as well register for CAS LX 507. These two courses are identical, meet together, and satisfy all of the same requirements :-) .
  • This course can satisfy requirements for both the Spanish and the Spanish & Linguistics majors; it can also satisfy the Linguistics major requirement for a course in the linguistic analysis of a specific language, as well as counting toward both the Spanish and Linguistics minors. See http://www.bu.edu/linguistics/UG/spanling.html for further details.

CAS LX 515

Languages in Contact: The high stakes of grammatical border-crossing

web A1 Erker TR 2-3:30 KCB 104
Examines the mechanisms and outcomes of language contact by surveying cases around the globe from the past and present. Topics include lexical-borrowing, code-switching, pidgins and creoles, language death, and the emergence of entirely new linguistic systems. [Prereq: CAS LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or consent of instructor.]

Spring 2015

Course number Course title Section Instructor Days Time Room

CAS LS/LX 508

The Structure of Spanish

A1 Erker MWF 10-11 CAS 325
(Conducted in Spanish) The goal of this course is to introduce students to the structure of the Spanish language, with a focus on its morphology and syntax. We examine the internal structure of words and the inflectional and derivational processes that constrain them. In addition, the course introduces key concepts such as morpheme, affix, grammatical class, linguistic gender, nominalization, and verbalization. We also investigate fundamental principles of syntactic theory and analysis, with an emphasis on the hierarchical relationships among words at the phrasal level. We use naturalistic speech data, collected from around the Spanish-speaking world, to critically examine key assumptions and tools of contemporary syntactic theory, including X-bar theory, binary branching, thematic role assignment, and the concept of the sentence. We give special attention the notion of ungrammaticality as it relates to syntactic and morphological variation and change. [Prereq: One 300-level Spanish course and CAS LX 250 or consent of instructor]
  • Note: This course cannot substitute for CAS LX 522 Syntax I for major or minor requirements, although it does count for the Linguistic major requirement of a course on the linguistic analysis of a specific language or as an elective for the Linguistics minor.
  • This course can also satisfy requirements for both the Spanish and the Spanish & Linguistics majors, and it can also count as one of the six courses for the Spanish minor.
  • See http://www.bu.edu/linguistics/UG/spanling.html for further details.