The Society for the Study of the Indigenous Languages of the Americas

Call for Papers — SSILA 2017 — Austin, Texas




Annual Meeting, Austin, Texas

January 5-8, 2017


Call for Papers, Posters, and Organized Sessions


Deadline for Organized Session Proposals: July 1, 2016

Deadline for abstracts: August 1, 2016


The annual winter meeting of SSILA will be held jointly with the annual meeting of the Linguistic Society of America in Austin, Texas, at the JW Marriot Austin, January 5-8, 2017. Information about the hotel and location can be found at the LSA website ( Participants will be able to register for the meeting and reserve hotel rooms on-line at the LSA site between 09/01/2016 and 12/18/2016.


Call for Papers


SSILA welcomes abstracts for papers, posters, and organized sessions that present original research focusing on the linguistic study of the indigenous languages of the Americas.  To download the Call for Papers, please click on


Abstract Submission

This content is for members only.

Abstracts must conform to the guidelines below.


General Requirements


  1. All authors must be members of SSILA. See the SSILA website for information about membership and renewal. The membership requirement may be waived for co-authors, or for participants in organized sessions, who are from disciplines other than those ordinarily represented by SSILA (linguistics and linguistic anthropology). Requests for waivers of membership must be made by a member of the Society to the SSILA Executive Secretary. (Note: Membership in LSA is not required for participation in SSILA sessions.)


  1. Any member may submit one single-author abstract and one multi-author abstract OR two multi-author abstracts.


  1. After an abstract has been submitted, no changes of author, title, or wording of the abstract, other than those due to typographical errors, are permitted.


  1. Papers or posters must be delivered as projected in the abstract or represent bona fide developments of the same research.


  1. Papers must not appear in print before the meeting.


  1. Handouts, if any, are not to be submitted with abstracts but should be available at the meeting for those listening to the presentation.


  1. All presenters of individual papers or posters and all participants in organized sessions must register for the meeting through LSA.


  1. Authors who must withdraw from the program should inform the SSILA Executive Secretary as soon as possible.


  1. Authors may not submit identical abstracts for presentation at the SSILA meeting and the LSA meeting or a meeting of one of the Sister Societies (ADS, ANS, NAAHoLS, SPCL, TALE). Authors who are discovered to have done so will have these abstracts removed from consideration. Authors may submit substantially different abstracts for presentation at the SSILA meeting and an LSA or Sister Society meeting.


  1. Late abstracts will not be considered, whatever the reason for the delay.


Abstract Format


Please see the accompanying document, “Instructions for submitting abstracts using EasyChair,” for important information about long and short abstracts.


  1. Abstracts should be uploaded as a file in PDF format to the abstract submittal form on the EasyChair website.


  1. The abstract, including examples if needed, should be no more than one typed page (11pt or 12pt font, single spaced, with 1-inch margins); a second page may be used for references. Abstracts longer than one page will be rejected without being evaluated.


  1. At the top of the abstract, give a title that is not more than one 7-inch typed line and that clearly indicates the topic of the paper.


  1. Abstracts will be reviewed anonymously. Do not include your name on the abstract. If you identify yourself in any way in the abstract (e.g. “In Smith (1992)…I”), the abstract will be rejected without being evaluated. Of course, it may be necessary to refer to your own work in the third person in order to appropriately situate the research.


  1. Abstracts which do not conform to these format guidelines will not be considered.


Abstract Contents


Papers or posters whose main topic does not focus on the indigenous languages of the Americas will be rejected without further consideration by the Program Committee. The Program Committee requires further that the subject matter be related to linguistics and language revitalization, that the research presented include new findings or developments not published before the meeting, that the papers not be submitted with malicious or scurrilous intent, and that the abstract be coherent and in accord with these guidelines.


Abstracts are more often rejected because they omit crucial information rather than because of errors in what they include. The most important criterion is relevance to the understanding of indigenous languages of the Americas, but other factors are important, too. It is important to present results so that they will be of interest to the whole SSILA (and larger) linguistic community, not just to those who work on the same language or language family that you do.


A suggested outline for abstracts is as follows:


  1. State the problem or research question raised by prior work, with specific reference to relevant prior research.


  1. Give a clear indication of the nature and source of your data (primary fieldwork, archival research, secondary sources).


  1. State the main point or argument of the proposed presentation.


  1. Regardless of the subfield, cite sufficient data, and explain why and how they support the main point or argument. For examples in languages other than English, provide word-by-word glosses and underline or boldface the portions of the examples which are critical to the argument.


  1. State the relevance of your ideas to past work or to the future development of the field. Describe analyses in as much detail as possible. Avoid saying in effect “a solution to this problem will be presented”. If you are taking a stand on a controversial issue, summarize the arguments that led you to your position.


  1. State the contribution to linguistic research made by the analysis.


  1. Please include a list of references for any work cited in the abstract.


Categories of Presentation


Authors are required to indicate the preferred category of their presentation at the time of submitting the abstract. The program committee will try to accommodate this preference as space and time allow. The categories to choose from are:


Phonetics, Phonology, Morphology, Syntax, Semantics, Historical Linguistics, Sociolinguistics, Lexicography, Applied Linguistics, Language Revitalization, Other.


20-Minute Papers. The bulk of the program will consist of 20-minute papers, with 10 additional minutes for discussion. Guidelines for preparing abstracts for these papers appear above.


Posters. Depending on subject and/or content, it may be more appropriate to submit an abstract to the poster session for visual presentation rather than to a 20-minute paper session. In general, the sorts of papers which are most effective as posters are those in which the major conclusions become evident from the thoughtful examination of charts and graphs, rather than those which require the audience to follow a sustained chain of verbal argumentation. Therefore, authors will want to make points in narrative form as brief as possible. A poster should be able to stand alone—that is, be understandable even if the author is not present. Abstracts for posters should follow the same guidelines as those for papers. SSILA poster sessions share space with LSA posters.


Organized Sessions. SSILA welcomes submission of organized session proposals. Organized sessions typically involve more than one scholar and are expected to make a distinctive and creative contribution to the meeting. Proposals for organized sessions are NOT reviewed anonymously. These sessions may be: (1) symposia which include several presentations on a single topic; (2) workshops focused on a specific theme or issue; (3) colloquia which include a major presentation with one or more invited discussants; or (4) sessions of any other kind with a clear, specific, and coherent rationale.


The organizer(s) of such sessions should notify the program chair (Keren Rice: of their intent to submit a proposal at the earliest possible date, but no later than July 1st, including a general statement of the purpose and structure of the session. A full proposal must be submitted to the program chair by August 1st and must include: (1) a session abstract outlining the purpose, motivation, length (maximum: 3 hours), and justification for the session; (2) names of all participants, including discussants, and titles of papers; and (3) a complete account, including timetable, of what each participant will do. Note that organized sessions, even when structured as symposia, do not have to follow the 20-minute paper + 10-minute discussion format.


All participants in organized sessions should submit an abstract of their paper following the submission instructions. Should the organized session not be accepted, the abstracts will be considered instead for the general session.


Updated: August 4, 2016 — 4:43 pm

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