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Dialect Morphology
Dialect Data base
Dialect Use and Subjective Dialectology
Modeling of dialectgeography and sociodialectological linguistic variation
Private Matters

1973-2006 researcher at the Meertens Institute of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences; Variational linguistics; guest researcher after retirement.

Dialect Morphology
When collaborating at the Atlas Linguarum Europa (ALE), I edited with H. Hogerheijde four European dialect maps with commentaries on the similarities and differences of the word formations in the dialects of the European languages of the word field of “lightning”, “thunder” and “striking lightning”. The commentaries concentrated on the semantic motifs and the morphological formations. In 2010, I analysed the rôle of sacred taboo, alone for Dutch and Flemish dialects, in this word field.
The raw materials of the ALE-project are now stored in the archives of the Meertens Institute.

My morphological research covers not only studies on the verbal endings, clitic pronomina, nominal gender and adjectival gender expression, and on plural formation in the present-day dialects of the Netherlands and in the past, but also, in general, on wordfinal -e, -en, -n(e), -(e)t en -s(t) in the different morphological word classes. I did also research on (morphological) umlaut.
In connection with these problems, I wrote also articles on t-deletion, some together with Piet van Reenen), n-deletion and e-deletion (sjwa-apocope).

Drawing © 1999 Willem Vleeschouwer

I did also research on diphthongization and Great Vowel Shift-like phenomena in Dutch dialects, and on so-called ‘zachte’ /g/ (palatalized fricative), past and present.
Investigations on COMP-agreement (verbal agreement on subordinate sentence initial conjunctions) combined the research themes of verbal endings and clitic pronouns. This field of research is in part syntactic in character, but my contributions emphasize the morphological and phonological aspects. For some dialects, I could establish a complete paradigm of COMP-agreement.

Dialect Data base GTRP (Data base MAND)
Johan Taeldeman (Universiteit van Gent, België), Piet van Reenen and I started a huge fieldwork project 'Fonologie en Morfologie van de Nederlandse dialecten op basis van veldwerk' (Phonology and Morphology of the Dutch dialects based on field work). The phonetic transcriptions of the recorded dialect utterances were made by trained fieldworkers. Together with Piet van Reenen (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam) we draw up the data base of this project: the Goeman-Taeldeman-Van Reenen Project (GTRP), first at the Free University Amsterdam, later at the Meertens Institute. The present look of the data base owes much to Boudewijn van den Berg and Jan-Pieter Kunst.
The project generated, in Belgium and the Netherlands - and also abroad - a sizable body of research. The research group of John Nerbonne (Groningen University) is a heavy user too. My own investigations are for the greater part also based on these data.

Dialect atlasses
Based on our fieldwork and data base two voluminous dialect atlasses were published, with explanations with relevant litterature to each map:
Fonologische Atlas van de Nederlandse Dialecten I-IV (Phonological Atlas of the Dutch Dialects; Ghent University)
Morfologische Atlas van de Nederlandse Dialecten I-II (Morphological Atlas of the Dutch Dialects; Meertens Institute-KNAW).
In particular, I worked on the morphological atlas for which I coordinated the investigations and collaborated with Boudewijn van den Berg, Thera de Jong and Georges de Schutter (Antwerp University) for Volume I; and with Boudewijn van den Berg, Anke Jongkind, Oele Koornwinder, Marc van Oostendorp and Piet van Reenen for Volume II. The chapters concerning the flexion of adjectives (gender) and on verbal flexion in present tense and past tense paradigms were written by me.
As of 2010 we work on the lining up of the original digitized sound recordings with the transcriptions in the data base (see Dialect Data Base).
I read Dutch language and literature at Nijmegen University (with A. Weijen), General Linguistics (with R. Kraak), Psycholinguistics (with G. Kempen), linguistic statistics and formal languages at the Centre de Linguistique Quantitative of Paris University; a course on formal grammers (with P. Levelt, Nijmegen University). PhD at the Free University Amsterdam, supervisor Piet van Reenen on aspects of t-deletion in Dutch dialects.

Dialect Use and Subjective Dialectology
Weijnen's work on subjectively perceived resemblances between dialects led me to a nineteenth-century early attempt into that direction (Willems, Louvain University, who could not work it out). The scrutiny of direction-sensitive, geographical aspects of these naive judgements led me to connect these to structural linguistic aspects. The survey into dialect use in the Netherlands (together with Willy Jongenburger) is related to this field of research. I hope to publish in the near future a comparable analysis for a specific group of speakers that are motivated to respond to dialect surveys.

Modeling of dialectgeography and sociodialectological linguistic variation
Nearly all my investigations assume the inherent variability of linguistic data and of linguistic behaviour, and tries to distinguish the real patterns, the structure from accidents. Therefore, I approach, through statistical modeling, the internal linguistic and the social factors that shape that structure; I consider linguistic theory as a spotlight to see better into dusky speakers' language use.

I am an amateur violoncello player and I like trekkings and mountainclimbing. I'm married to Gerrie Toebast (French teacher); we've got two children: Brecht (an architect, and owner of architectal bureau 'BrechtArchitect'), Dirk (a geotechnical engineer) en two young grandchildren: Mennan Köse and Yade Köse. Their father, Furkan, is an extremely gifted and accomplished architect too (see his profile on Linked In; he owns 'Atelier PUUUR architectuur & stedenbouw').