Elizabeth Cowper

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Elizabeth Cowper (born 1952) is Professor Emeritus of linguistics at the University of Toronto.[1] She specializes in the interface between syntax and semantics, and has worked on the interpretable features of both the nominal and the clausal domains. She has written about the features of tense and aspect in English and Spanish,[2] arguing that the tense and aspect features are arranged in a hierarchical feature geometry. She is the author of A Concise Introduction to Syntactic Theory: The Government-Binding Approach (University of Chicago Press),[3] which is still in print after 22 years, and which has been translated into Korean. She has also claimed that plural number is more marked than dual number,[4] in other words that plural can be more complex than dual. She has also been active in academic administration. From 1999 to 2005 she was Chair of the Department of Humanities at the University of Toronto Scarborough, and from 2005 to 2009 she was Vice-Dean (Programs) at the School of Graduate Studies, University of Toronto, among many other positions. In 2014 she was awarded the Vivek Goel Faculty Citizenship Award.[5] She retired from teaching and administration in June 2014.


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