Dr Christina Sevdali
Life Before Ulster
Dr Christina Sevdali was born in Greece and obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Greek Philology with a major in Linguistics from the University of Crete in 2000. In 2002 she obtained her MPhil in theoretical linguistics from the University of Cambridge and then moved on to do a PhD, which she obtained in 2007.
Her PhD dissertation ‘Infinitival clauses in Ancient Greek: overt and null subjects, the role of Case and Focus’ from the University of Cambridge, supervised by Ian Roberts, investigates the challenging interaction between the Accusativus cum Infinitivo construction and control in Ancient Greek. During her PhD, Christina also spent a semester at MIT as a visiting student, working with Sabine Iatridou.
Christina is the Course Director of the Language and Linguistics degree at the School of Communication and Media and teaches linguistic modules in both the undergraduate and the postgraduate provision.
Her teaching centres around morphology, syntax as well as historical linguistics. She has supervised PhD dissertations on the syntax of Irish noun phrases, trilingualism, dialects, aphasia, as well as Greek diachrony, bilingualism and acquisition of case.
Christina’s research interests include synchronic and diachronic syntax, Greek linguistics, syntax – morphology interface and multilingualism. More specifically she is interested in finiteness and its relationship to subjects, the theory of Control and specifically Partial Control, Case/case in synchrony and diachrony especially in relation to phenomena such as focus and emphasis, datives and quirky subjects, object drop and cognate objects and the diachrony of complementation.
In 2017, she secured an AHRC grant alongside Professor Elena Anagnostopoulou (University of Crete) on “Investigating Variation and Change: Case in diachrony.” The project looks into on the diachrony of the Greek case system, with particular focus on dative and genitive and, couched within the generative framework, it aims to contribute to the question of the place of case in grammar, as a phenomenon that relates to both syntax and morphology.
Christina has published in leading journals of the field such as Language, Natural Language and Linguistic Theory, Syntax, Lingua, Journal of Historical Syntax, Lingue e Linguaggi, Journal of Comparative Germanic Linguistics and the Proceedings of NELS. She also co-edited an Oxford University Press volume “Syntax and its limits”, with Raffella Folli (Ulster University) and Robert Truswell (University of Edinburgh).
Christina is a member of UCoM (Ulster Centre on Multilingualism) and leads the Language made fun project, in collaboration with Barnardo’s NI.
This project, funded by the Lottery trust, aims to assist children of refugees and asylum seekers with their English while also promoting multilingualism.