Thomas Shannon

Professor of German
Dept of German
510 643-2004
Research Expertise and Interest
linguistics, control, German, Dutch, syntax, phonology, naturalness, syllable structure, complementation, ergative phenomena, passivization, perfect auxiliary selection, word order, processing factors syntactic phenomena, cognitive, functional grammar, corpus
Research Description

Thomas F. Shannon, Professor of Germanic Linguistics, member of the Dutch Studies Program faculty, and former director of the UC exchange program in Germany, has been in our department since 1980. He holds Master's degrees in German (SUNY Albany) and Theoretical Linguistics (Indiana) and a Ph.D. in Germanic Linguistics (Indiana). His areas of specialization are modern German and Dutch, particularly syntax and phonology, and he has published widely on a variety of topics, including naturalness, syllable structure, complementation and control, ergative phenomena, passivization, perfect auxiliary selection, and word order. He is particularly interested in functional and cognitive approaches, e.g. the affects of various semantic, pragmatic, and processing factors on syntactic phenomena. Working from actual texts, he is presently studying several word order phenomena in Dutch and German, especially the ordering of elements in the middle field as well as historical change in West Germanic, including Afrikaans, Low German, and Yiddish. Shannon has taught and conducted research in the Netherlands at the Rijksuniversiteit Groningen on a Fulbright grant and researched at the Institut für deutsche Sprache in Mannheim. Active professionally, he serves on MLA Executive Committees, the Editorial Advisory Board of the Journal of Germanic Linguistics, and the Executive Committee of the American Association of Netherlandic Studies (AANS), and was formerly Vice President of the Society for Germanic Philology. He is also editor of the AANS Publications series, and co-editor with Johan Snapper of the Berkeley Conference on Dutch Literature and Linguistics series.

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