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Lori Repetti


Professor and Chair
Ph.D. 1989, University of California, Los Angeles

I study the phonology and history of the Romance languages, in particular Italian and Italian dialects, and my research falls primarily into three areas.

1. phonology and its interaction with other areas of grammar (phonetics, morphology, syntax) : My current research examines the prosodic structures of northern Italian dialects and their interface with morphological and syntactic structures, and the realization of clitics in different morphological and syntactic contexts. Sample recent publications in this area include: Repetti (2020), Repetti (2016), Ordóñez and Repetti (2014)Kim and Repetti (2013), Cardinaletti and Repetti (2009)Cardinaletti and Repetti (2008), Cardinaletti and Repetti (2007)Ordóñez and Repetti (2006).

   • student projects: Sophie Moradi’s work on the morphological restriction on epenthesis

2. micro-variation: I also investigate the ways in which closely related languages differ, the constraints on that variation, and the historical processes that lead to the types of differences observed. My work focuses on the endangered Romance languages (“dialects”) spoken in Italy. Here are some recent publications on this topic: Repetti (2016), Liu and Repetti (2020_NACCL), Liu and Repetti (2020_WECOL), Ordóñez and Repetti (2014), Romanello and Repetti (2014).

   • student projects: Ji Yea Kim’s work on epenthesis in Korean; Yang Liu's research on syllable phonotactics in Chinese dialects

Related to this is my interest in  typology, or the range of variation attested in human languages and what that can tell us about universal grammar. A group of students and I are involved in a project looking at reduplicative structures (such as flip-flop or itsy-bitsy) cross-linguistically. We presented a preliminary report at the 2020 LSA conference in New Orleans, and you can find our poster here.

   • student projects: ablaut and rhyme reduplication with Grace Wivell, Veronica Miatto, Kalina Kostyszyn, Ayla Karakas

3.  loanword phonology: A long-standing research interest of mine has been the adaptation of foreign words to the phonology and morphology of the borrowing language. You can find some of that work here:  Repetti (2012)Repetti (2009)Repetti (2006).

My research has been funded by both NEH and NSF, and I have conducted field research throughout Europe.

You can find a recent version of my CV here.

Find a list of my selected publications  here

Database:  Clitics of Romance Languages (Lori Repetti and Francisco Ordóñez) CRL is a searchable database that allows users to examine data involving a class of pronouns (clitics) that are normally stressless, but which, in the languages under investigation, may exhibit or modify stress. The database includes text as well as audio files for minority Romance languages spoken in the South of France, the South and North of Italy, the Balearic Islands, and the islands of Corsica and Sardinia.