Craig Sailor
cwsailor@gmail.com

University of Edinburgh

Department of Linguistics
and English Language

About me

I'm a teaching fellow (≈ fixed-term lecturer) in syntax in the department of Linguistics and English Language at the University of Edinburgh.

My research is primarily on syntax and its interface with phonology. These are two distinct computational systems that seem to work with very different representations, so my research in this area reflects my attempt to understand how these two grammatical modules able to "talk" to each other in spite of these differences. My work on this question often involves ellipsis, because I think it's especially well-suited to teach us how abstract syntactic structures get mapped onto phonological strings.

Alongside these broad architectural topics, I also do a lot of work documenting and analyzing points of small-scale syntactic variation across dialects of English and Scots. I adopt methods from formal syntax as a tool to probe this variation, but most of my work on these varieties has a core descriptive component, bringing visibility to various dialect features that have received little or no attention in the previous literature. Lately, I've been particularly interested in the status of Verb Second in English and Scots, because I've found evidence that novel V2 environments are still being innovated in some varieties.

A selection of papers and handouts can be found below. For a complete list, see my CV.
 

Recent research by topic

Syntactic variation in dialects of English and Scots:

  • Handout: Sailor, Craig. 2021. "Partial V2: Residue or innovation?" Presented at the Residual Verb Second in Romance workshop 1, 10 June 2021, Oslo, Norway (online).
  • Paper: Sailor, Craig. 2020. "Rethinking 'residual' verb second." In Rethinking Verb Second, eds. R. Woods and S. Wolfe, chapter 6, 126-149. Oxford University Press.
  • Handout: Sailor, Craig and Gary Thoms. 2019. "Exhortative clauses in Scots." Presented at the European Dialect Syntax (Edisyn) Workshop IX, 23 March 2019, Glasgow, Scotland.
  • Paper: Griffiths, James and Craig Sailor. 2015. "Prepositional Object Gaps in British English." Linguistics in the Netherlands 2015, 63-74. [Note: this is a pre-publication draft and contains some minor errors.]

Ellipsis:

The syntax-phonology interface:


Some recent papers (listed chronologically) (for a complete list, see my CV)

Newell, Heather and Craig Sailor. To appear. "Minimalism and the syntax-phonology interface." In The Cambridge Handbook of Minimalism, eds. K. Grohmann and E. Leivada. Cambridge University Press. [Note: contact us for a draft!]

Sailor, Craig. 2022. "The morphophonology of ellipsis: evidence for Segregated Transfer." In The Derivational Timing of Ellipsis, eds. A. Lipták and G. Güneş, chapter 6, 225-252. Oxford University Press.

Ahn, Byron, Sunwoo Jeong, and Craig Sailor. To appear. "Systematic 'stray' focus stress in English? ApparentLY!." In Proceedings of WCCFL 39.

Sailor, Craig. 2020. "Rethinking 'residual' verb second." In Rethinking Verb Second, eds. R. Woods and S. Wolfe, chapter 6, 126-149. Oxford University Press.

Sailor, Craig. 2018. "The Typology of Head Movement and Ellipsis: a reply to Lipták & Saab." Natural Language & Linguistic Theory 36:851-875.

Thoms, Gary and Craig Sailor. 2018. "When silence gets in the way: extraction from do-ellipsis in British Dialects." NELS 48: Proceedings of the Forty-Eighth Annual Meeting of the North East Linguistic Society, ed. S. Hucklebridge and M. Nelson, volume 3, 145-154.

Sailor, Craig. In progress. "Tag Questions and the Typology of VP Ellipsis." Ms., UCLA. [Note: this is an updated and expanded version of material from the CLS 46 proceedings paper listed below. See also my UCLA MA thesis, above.]

Sailor, Craig. 2017. "Negative inversion without negation: on fuck-inversion in British English." In Cambridge Occasional Papers in Linguistics (COPiL) 10, eds. Chenchen Song and James Baker, 88-110. University of Cambridge.

Griffiths, James and Craig Sailor. 2015. "Prepositional Object Gaps in British English." Linguistics in the Netherlands 2015, 63-74. [Note: this is a pre-publication draft and contains some minor errors.]

Sailor, Craig and Gary Thoms. 2014. "On the Non-Existence of Non-Constituent Coordination and Non-Constituent Ellipsis." In Proceedings of the 31st West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics (WCCFL 31).

Sailor, Craig and Anoop Mahajan. 2013. "Toward a Derivational Typology." In Proceedings of the 42nd Annual Meeting of the North East Linguistic Society (NELS 42).

Sailor, Craig. 2012. "Inflection at the Interface." Ms., UCLA. [Note: see chapters 1 and 2 of my dissertation for an expanded version of this work.]

Zhang, Jie, Yuwen Lai, and Craig Sailor. 2011. "Modeling Taiwanese Speakers' Knowledge of Tone Sandhi in Reduplication." Lingua 121, pp. 181-206.

Sailor, Craig. To appear (submitted 2011). "VP Ellipsis in Tag Questions: A Typological Approach." In Proceedings of The 46th Annual Meeting of the Chicago Linguistic Society (CLS 46). [Note: see "Tag Questions and the Typology of VP Ellipsis", above, for an expanded version.]

Ahn, Byron and Craig Sailor. To appear (submitted 2011). "The Emerging Middle Class." In Proceedings of The 46th Annual Meeting of the Chicago Linguistic Society (CLS 46).

Zhang, Jie, Yuwen Lai, and Craig Sailor. 2009. "Effects of phonetics and frequency on the productivity of Taiwanese tone sandhi." In Proceedings of the 43rd Annual Meeting of the Chicago Linguistic Society (CLS 43).

Zhang, Jie, Yuwen Lai, and Craig Sailor. 2008. "Opacity, phonetics, and frequency in Taiwanese tone sandhi." In Proceedings of the 18th International Congress of Linguists.

Zhang, Jie, Yuwen Lai, and Craig Turnbull-Sailor. 2006. "Wug-testing the 'tone circle' in Taiwanese." In Proceedings of the 25th West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics (WCCFL 25), eds. Donald Baumer, David Montero, and Michael Scanlon. Cascadilla Proceedings Project, Somerville, MA. 453-461.
 

Some recent presentations & handouts (listed chronologically) (for a complete list, see my CV)

Handout: Sailor, Craig. 2021. "Ellipsis and the phonological prespecification of roots." Presented at BCGL 14: When syntax and phonology meet, 17 December 2021, Brussels, Belgium (online).

Newell, Heather and Craig Sailor. 2021. "Inclusiveness in the phonology and the source of the Prosodic Hierarchy." Presented at BCGL 14: When syntax and phonology meet, 16 December 2021, Brussels, Belgium (online).

Sailor, Craig. 2021. "Partial V2: Residue or innovation?" Presented at the Residual Verb Second in Romance workshop 1, 10 June 2021, Oslo, Norway (online).

Sailor, Craig. 2021. "Ellipsis in a modular perspective." Presented at the Cambridge SyntaxLab, 1 March 2021, Cambridge, England (online).

Sailor, Craig and Valentina Colasanti. 2020. "Co-speech gestures under ellipsis: a first look." Presented at the Linguistic Society of America (LSA) 2020 Annual Meeting, 5 January 2020, New Orleans, LA. [Updated handout available here.]

Sailor, Craig. 2019. "Situating ellipsis within the derivational timeline." Presented at the Sluicing and Ellipsis at 50 workshop, 13 April 2019, Chicago, IL.

Sailor, Craig and Gary Thoms. 2019. "Exhortative clauses in Scots." Presented at the European Dialect Syntax (Edisyn) Workshop IX, 23 March 2019, Glasgow, Scotland.

Ahn, Byron and Craig Sailor. 2019. "The landscape of semantics-prosody mismatches." Presented at the Linguistic Society of America (LSA) 2019 Annual Meeting, 3 January 2019, New York City, NY.

Craig Sailor. 2018. "Apparent rule orderings involving ellipsis." Keynote talk at the Timing of Ellipsis workshop, 51st Annual Meeting of the Societas Linguistica Europea (SLE), 31 August 2018, University of Tallinn, Estonia.

Sailor, Craig and James Griffiths. 2017. "Probing the PP domain: complex possessive PPs in British English." Presented at the Morphosyntactic Variation in Adpositions Workshop, 8 May 2017, University of Cambridge, England. [Note: this project is ongoing, but see here for an earlier version that appeared in print.]

Thoms, Gary and Craig Sailor. 2017. "When silence gets in the way: Extraction from do-ellipsis in British Dialects." Presented at the Linguistic Society of America (LSA) 2017 Annual Meeting, 6 January 2017, Austin, TX. [Note: this project is ongoing, but see here for an earlier version that appeared in print.]

Sailor, Craig. 2016. "Rethinking 'residual' verb second." Presented at the Rethinking Verb Second workshop, 22 March 2016, University of Cambridge, England. [Note: the paper is available here.]

Sailor, Craig. 2015. "Polarity-Driven Inversion in British English and Beyond." Invited talk given to the University College London syntax group. 20 February 2015, London, England. [Note: the paper is available here.]

Ahn, Byron and Craig Sailor. 2014. "Obligatory Object Gaps in Infinitival Clauses." Presented at the Linguistic Society of America (LSA) 2014 Annual Meeting, 2 January 2014, Minneapolis, MN.

Sailor, Craig. 2013. "Questionable Negation." Presented at the Linguistic Society of America (LSA) 2013 Annual Meeting, 3 January 2013, Boston, MA.

Sailor, Craig. 2012. "The Size of Silence: Diagnosing the Fine Structure of VP Ellipsis." Invited talk presented at the Talks in Linguistics series, 16 November 2012, University of Illinois at Chicago. [Note: see chapter 1 of my dissertation for an expanded version of this work.]

Sailor, Craig. 2012. "On Embedded Polar Replies." Presented at the Workshop on the Syntax of Answers to Polar Questions, 9 June 2012, Newcastle University.

Sailor, Craig. 2012. "Remarks on Replies: on Emphatic Polarity in English." Presented at the Linguistic Society of America (LSA) 2012 Annual Meeting, 5 January 2012, Portland, OR. [Note: see chapter 3 of my dissertation for an expanded version of this work.]

Sailor, Craig and Byron Ahn. 2010. "The Voices in our Heads: The VoiceP in English." Ms., UCLA. Presented at the Workshop on Morphological Voice and its Grammatical Interfaces, June 25-27 2010, University of Vienna.

Sailor, Craig and Grace Kuo. 2010. "Taiwanese VP Ellipsis and the Progressive Prohibition." Ms., UCLA. Presented at the joint meeting of the International Association of Chinese Linguistics 18 (IACL-18) and the North American Conference on Chinese Linguistics 22 (NACCL-22), Harvard University.


Theses/Dissertation

Sailor, Craig. 2014. The Variables of VP Ellipsis. Doctoral dissertation, UCLA.

Sailor, Craig. 2009. Tagged for Deletion: A Typological Approach to VP Ellipsis in Tag Questions. Master's thesis, UCLA.

Turnbull-Sailor, Craig. 2007. Syntactic Patterns of Embedded wh- Clauses. Master's thesis, University of Kansas.

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Last updated: 10 April 2022