The 1st LISSIM (Linguistics Spring School in the Indian Mountains) was held under the auspices of FOSSSIL (Formal Studies in Syntax and Semantics of Indian Languages) from March 26 to April 4th, 2007 in Kausani, a hill station in the famed Kumaun region of the northern Indian state of Uttaranchal (recently re-christened Uttarakhand). The School involved 9 days of teaching by 4 renowned linguists from 10:30 AM to 6 PM everyday divided into 3 sessions each day. In total, the School consisted of 42 hrs of teaching and discussion on the following topics:
· Generic Null pronouns
· Syntax of replies to yes/ no question
· Split Ergativity in Hawrami
· Head movement
· Romance complement and 2nd position clitics
· Clitic climbing and restructuring verbs
· Split Ergativity
· Remnant movement
· Phrasal movement approach to verb morphology
· Topic/ Focus structure wrt:
o Wh-t dependency
o Aspectual focus
The four teachers were:
· KA Jayaseelan (Remnant/ Phrasal Movement)
· Nomi Erteschik-Shir (Topic/ Focus)
· Ian Roberts (Head Movement)
· Anders Holmberg (pro; Yes/ No replies)
Research (MPhil and PhD) Linguistics students and teachers from University of Delhi, Jawaharlal University (Delhi), CIEFL (Hyderabad), Tezpur University (Assam), University of Trieste attended the School, a couple of them working on Indian Sign Language.
Data and constructions from at least 15 languages from 10 different language families were discussed during this period, they are:
Assamese, Bangla, Danish, Eke Gussi (a Bantu language), Finnish, French, Hawrami (a Kurdish language), Hindi, Indian Sign Language, Italian, Khasi, Malayalam, Manipuri, Sindhi and Vietnamese
Venue: A beautiful, many-levelled hotel in the midst of one of the most stunning, snow capped ranges of the Himalayas, which includes Nanda Devi, the highest peak on the Indian side. Wide open space and beautiful gardens of the hotel combined with excellent and very helpful staff made this a memorable experience for all. In addition, the fact that the entire hotel was given to us and we set the menu for each meal, and once, on the day of the party towards the end, even cooked for ourselves, gave us a lot of freedom to do our own things as well. Pleasant evenings were spent in groups sitting in the verandahs discussing linguistic and non-linguistics things. Ten days of accommodation (shared except for the teachers), food, transport (from the nearest railhead to the hotel, about 140 Kms) was about Rs 2680 (Euro 48, Pound 32, Dollar 59). Registration for the Spring School and life membership to the Society were extra for foreign participants.
Excursion: Right at the middle of the School, the group went for a one-night outing to Chaukori to enjoy the view of yet another range consisting of Annapurna –the third highest peak in the world. The group also had a special and memorable bonfire night during this trip. The cost per person for the outing including accommodation, food, drinks and transport (180 Kms in all) was only Rs. 672 (Euro 12, Pound 8, Dollar 15).