The Centre for General Linguistics, one of the centres functioning within the Institute for the Languages and Cultures of the Baltic, was created in 2018. It is a successor to the Chair of General Linguistics headed between 1994 and 2001 at the Faculty of Philology by Prof. Aleksas Girdenis. We teach various subjects of general linguistics, such as Trends in Contemporary Linguistics, Linguistic Diversity and Language Science, Linguistic Typology, Grammatical Theory and Syntax. We carry out research in both functional and formal frameworks. Our seminars for PhD students and staff provide a forum for theoretical discussion and for the presentation of research work on topics of linguistics at Faculty level and beyond.
Axel Holvoet, distinguished professor
I am a functional linguist working on problems of grammatical semantics, the syntax-semantics interface and historical syntax, with a special emphasis on the Baltic and Slavonic languages. At Vilnius University I have headed two international research projects funded by the Research Council of Lithuania, one on the syntax-semantics interface in Baltic (“Valency, Argument Realization and Grammatical Relations in Baltic”, 2012–2015; the research outcome was published in the form of an eponymous five-volume editorial series by John Benjamins), and the other on grammatical semantics in Baltic (“The Baltic Verb: Grams, Categories and Domains”, 2018–2021).
My recent research topics include the middle voice, non-directive imperatives, the irrealis controversy and the category of mood. In earlier years I have also worked on case marking and grammatical relations, definiteness, verbal aspect, modality, echoic use and other subjects.
The notion of mood reexamined, against the background of modality
To appear in Voprosy Jazykoznanija 2021.6
The dual nature of irrealis in complementation
Studies in Language 44.1 (2020)
Sources and pathways for non-directive imperatives
Linguistics 58.2 (2020), pp. 333–362
Epistemic modality, evidentiality, quotativity and echoic use
In: Epistemic Modalities and Evidentiality in Cross-Linguistic Perspective,
Zlatka Guentchéva (ed.),
De Gruyter Mouton, Berlin, 2008
Vladimir Panov, assistant professor
I am a scholar in linguistic typology and general linguistics. The sphere of my research interests covers such topics as the typology of grammatical categories of the verb, the typology of discourse particles, boundaries between morphology, syntax and discourse, language-particular description of grammatical and discourse phenomena, the areal typology of Eurasia. In my research, I combine the traditional Greenbergian typology based on comparative concepts with elements of multivariate typology, but I am also interested in constructionist usage-based approaches and, recently, practice-oriented frameworks of linguistic anthropology.
I have fieldwork experience studying the living Greek dialects of Italy (Salento) and the Buriat language.
My last personal project (a postdoctoral study, 2018-2020) was devoted to the study of areal patterns of distribution of discourse particles in Eurasia. More recently, I have been involved in “The Baltic verb” project studying aspects of the grammar of the Lithuanian verb in a typological context.
Juk and gi, and “particles” in contemporary Lithuanian: Explaining language-particular elements in a cross-linguistic context
Kalbotyra 72, pp. 58–86
The marking of uncontroversial information in Europe: presenting the enimitive
Acta Linguistica Hafniensia 52.1, pp. 1–44
Final particles in Asia: Establishing an areal feature
Linguistic Typology 24.1, pp. 13–70
Exploring the asymmetric coding of autobenefactive in Lithuanian and beyond
Baltic Linguistics 11, pp. 343–371
A peculiar Lithuanian particle mat or Mat ją bala, irgi mat dalelytė!
Vilnius University Open Series 16, pp. 291–308
Anna Daugavet, assistant professor
I have studied areal parallels in the development of phonological and grammatical categories in Baltic, Finnic and Slavonic languages. I have done research on tone and stress patterns and syllable weight, as well as their interaction with vowel and consonant changes. Since these features are often used in classification of dialects, my work also touches upon issues of dialect history. My current interests lie with verbal categories as they are reflected in monolingual and parallel text corpora, especially the expression of aspectual and modal meanings.
Perfekt v litovskom i latyšskom jazykax: sopostavitel’nyj analiz na osnove tipologičeskoj ankety [Perfect grams in Lithuanian and Latvian: A comparative analysis based on a typological questionnaire]
Voprosy Jazykoznanija 2021.4, pp. 7–41
Central and Eastern Europe
In: The Oxford Handbook of Language Prosody, C. Gussenhoven & A. Chen (eds.) Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2020, pp. 225–235
An elusive experiential tense construction in Latvian
Baltic Linguistics 2019.10, pp. 109–153
Alexandre Cremers, postdoctoral research worker
I am a researcher in linguistics, more specifically in semantics and pragmatics. My research focuses on phenomena at the interface between linguistic meaning and general reasoning, in particular questions, implicatures, and gradable adjectives. My work combines psycholinguistic approaches (studying linguistic behavior both in adults and in children), traditional formal approaches inspired by logic, and quantitative probabilistic modeling.
I currently work on the LMT project “Efficient communication under uncertainty: Vagueness and Implicatures”. The goal is to find out how we manage to communicate efficiently using vague terms such as 'tall' or 'far', and how vagueness interacts with our ability to figure out the speaker's intentions.
Ignorance implicatures of modified numerals
Linguistics and Philosophy 2021
Vagueness in Implicature: The Case of Modified Adjectives
Journal of Semantics 2019
Distributive ignorance inferences
Semantics & Pragmatics 2019
Plurality effects in an exhaustification-based theory of embedded questions
Natural Language Semantics 26.3, 2019, pp. 193–251
Danguolė Kotryna Kapkan, PhD student
I am currently working on my PhD thesis, dealing with peripheral perfects in the European languages. My main research interests lie with linguistic typology, grammatical semantics, grammaticalization, corpus linguistics, linguistic variation, Lithuanian, Italian, and the dialects of Southern Italy. In my work, I try to combine qualitative and quantitative research methods while being conscious not only of the cross-linguistic, but also of the intra-linguistic variation. Previously, I studied English and Portuguese languages at the University of Bari, Italy (BA), and then General Linguistics at the University of Vilnius (MA), where I decided to stay for my PhD, after doing a couple of study semesters abroad in Antwerp, Belgium, and Lisbon, Portugal.
Perfect in Lithuanian: A case study based on the data from Facebook comments
To appear in Baltic Linguistics
La fraseologia calviniana in lituano: Il caso di Perplėštas vikontas
In: Si dice in molti modi. Fraseologia e traduzioni nel Visconte dimezzato di Italo Calvino. Sabine E. Koesters Gensini & Andrea Berardini (eds.), Sapienza Università Editrice, Roma, 2020