Dr Marc Olivier-Loiseau
Prior to my current post, I held research and teaching positions at Queen's University Belfast and Ulster University. I have a PhD in Linguistics, with specialisation in historical syntax. In 2023, I was awarded a Seal of Excellence by the European Commission in recognition of the quality of my research. My research mainly focuses on clitic placement, restructuring clauses, and infinitives.
I am the PI of a research project entitled The Effects of Syntactic Operations on Cognition, supported by the John Fell Fund at the University of Oxford (ref. E1D00240). This project employs two Research Assistants, Tom R Williamson (UWE Bristol & University of Southern California) and Yuyan Xue (University of Cambridge). The aim of this pilot study is to understand the scale of the interaction between the parameters that dictate the rules of syntactic operations in different languages and the high-level cognitive capacities that speakers of these languages possess. Specifically, we will test whether pro-drop influences recognition memory for Spanish native speakers.
I am starting a research collaboration with the CLESTHIA lab (Université Sorbonne Nouvelle). Whilst topics on clitic placement and variation have been extensively studied, the nature of clitics less so. Broadly speaking, the project will look into what a clitic is, and what it is not.
I am under contract with Oxford University Press to produce a book entitled Clitic Placement in the History of French. The title is self-explanatory with respect to the topic of the monograph, in which I provide formal analyses of word order and word order change.
I have co-authored an article on restructuring clauses in Medieval French with Prof Raffaella Folli and Dr Christina Sevdali (Ulster University) published in Glossa. Read and download the article here.
I am currently co-authoring a chapter on causatives and perception verbs with Lieven Danckaert (Université de Lille) for the volume Bridging the gap between Late Latin and Early Old French. Our empirical contribution is based on data from the PaLaFra Corpus.
Where to meet me:
With Anna Paradís, I will present our joint work on restructuring at the Romance Grammars, Context and Contact at the University of Birmingham in January 2024.
I will be presenting my work on the syntax of Old Occitan at Going Romance 37, in Nijmegen.
With Afra Pujol i Campeny, I am organising the 2025 edition of DiGS. Stay tuned for more!
I am co-convener for the Occitan Reading Group, which meets weekly. We read and translate Old and Modern Occitan texts. If you're in Oxford, you're very welcome to join! You don't need to have any prior knowledge of Occitan (though being familiar with a Romance language is recommended). More information here.
During the annual meeting of the SLE in Athens, I was elected to join the Executive Committee of Societas Linguistica Europaea - I am truly honoured, and I look forward to working with my European colleagues and promoting the field further.