Sound symbolism—systematic associations between sounds and meanings—had not been a topic that was actively explored in the generative tradition. In my recent research, however, I argue that formal phonology can benefit from perspectives and insights offered by research on sound symbolism, and vice versa. In this talk, I illustrate this thesis based on a new research paradigm, dubbed “Pokémonastics” (Kawahara et al. 2018; Shih et al. 2019), in which researchers explore the nature of sound symbolism in human languages using Pokémon names. In this talk, I am going to review (1) how Pokémonastics began, (2) why it is a useful research strategy, (3) what we have found so far, and (4) what more needs to be done.
Martin Krämer (The Arctic Unversity of Norway)
Gasper Begus (UC Berkeley)
Caterina Petrone (LPL, Aix-Marseille Université)
Hélène Serré (GIPSA-lab, Grenoble)