Ziwen Wang awarded a British Academy International Fellowship

The Faculty is delighted that Ziwen Wang has been awarded a British Academy International Fellowship to work on the genus alternans in Romance languages — an inflectional pattern whereby nouns select masculine agreement in the singular and feminine agreement in the plural, as in Romanian scaun albastru ‘blue chair’ (albastru is a masculine adjective form) as opposed to scaune albastre ‘blue chairs’ (albastre is a feminine adjective form).1 Building on earlier work by himself and Michele Loporcaro, which suggests that the genus alternans was once found across the Romance language family, Ziwen will be investigating the preservation and loss of this pattern in the whole history of Romance, together with the psycholinguistic and semantic factors at play. Congratulations, Ziwen, and we look forward to learning about the results!


1 Essay question: Is this a two-gender or a three-gender system?


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