Theory is a way of understanding naturally occurring phenomena. A lot of my research is situated within the context of Chomsky's Minimalist Program. Some of my work helps support certain predictions made by the Minimalist Program but most of my other work is relatively theory neutral. In such cases, the choice of theory is less crucial than determining what the right characterization of the facts are. My ultimate goal is uncovering the algorithms of human language, as it can reveal what makes humans, well, human.
My research, more often than not, has a cross-linguistic focus, as I use a lot of data from Tamil (Dravidian), English, and the Bantu languages, such as Kirundi and Lubukusu. I have recently started research on Malay, Hindi and Tagalog as part of my research project on tough constructions.
Below, I have listed some of my research topics.
Anti-agreement Anti-agreement is a phenomenon in which the usual phi agreement exhibited by arguments is obviated when that argument is a wh-word or some similar phrase.
Tough predicates and tough movement In this research thread, I investigate adjectival predicates and their clausal arguments. I recently completed papers on Tamil and Malay tough constructions and am currently beginning work on Tagalog. You can find out more about this project at this link.
Reflexives and Quantifier Binding This is a topic I explored in my dissertation (linked here), wherein I investigate the conditions under which reflexives and bound pronouns are licensed in a relatively novel linguistic environment; the copular clause.
Inversion, Structure Building and Case I am also interested in several inversion structures, which abound in the Bantu languages of West Africa. In such structures, the logical subject occurs in a lower position than its usual sentence-initial position. My main interest is in the licensing conditions for this.
You can find some recent manuscripts that are currently or soon to be submitted for review. Further below, I have a list of recent talks, handouts and papers.