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Dissertationsprojekt von Diego Romero Heredero

Interaction of nominal and verbal features for Differential Object Marking in Spanish (working title)

Differential Object Marking (DOM) is an extended phenomenon among the languages of the world (cf. e.g. Bossong 1991; Aissen 2003; Iemmolo 2010; Dimmendaal 2011; Bickel, Witzlack-Makarevich & Zakharko 2014; Sinnemäki 2014). It has often been described as the result of two interacting prominence relations. The first relation holds between the core arguments of a verb and the second one is implicational and it holds between alternative expressions for the direct object. In the first case, a direct object is case marked if it has a certain degree of prominence with respect to the subject. On the other hand, if one type of expression on a relevant Prominence Hierarchy is case marked, for instance an indefinite NP on the Referentiality Hierarchy, all expressions that are higher on that hierarchy must also be case marked.

It can be distinguished three types of relevant Prominence Hierarchies for DOM: nominal hierarchies (animacy, referentiality), an information structural hierarchy (topicality) and verbal hierarchies (affectedness, semantic role). While the nominal parameters of animacy and referentiality have been the main factors to categorize the type of DOM in a language (Bossong 1985; Aissen 2003) and topicality is assumed to be one of the driving forces for the grammaticalization of DOM (Iemmolo 2010), verbal parameters such as affectedness and semantic role are less well studied. We assume that only the interaction between nominal and verbal parameters will provide the background necessary for a comprehensive analysis of DOM in its distribution. To describe the interaction between nominal and verbal parameters, we have to decompose the respective prominence scales into primitives. This decomposition allows us to propose a detailed analysis of the interaction of the different kinds of Prominence Hierarchies.


Short biography

Diego Romero Heredero studied ‘Hispanic Studies’ at the University of Alcala. He graduated in 2013 (B.A.) with a thesis about the semantics-pragmatics interface, describing the phenomenon of presuppositions. Later, he completed a M.A. in Education on the teaching of the Spanish Language. Since March 2017, he works as associate researcher with Prof. Dr. Marco García García in the project B04 at the SFB 1252 Prominence in Language. His main research topics are Differential Object Marking, Morphosyntax-Semantics Interface, Verb Semantics.

Department of Romance Languages
CRC 1252 Prominence in Language
Luxemburger Str. 299, Room 1.04
Tel: +49(0)-221-470-89903
Homepage: Diego Romero Heredero
E-Mail: d.romeroheredero(at)uni-koeln.de
Office hours: appointment by email



von Heusinger, Klaus, Diego Romero & Georg A. Kaiser. 2016. Differential Object Marking in Spanish ditransitive constructions. An empirical approach. In Susann Fischer & Mario Navarro (eds.), Proceedings of the VII Nereus International Workshop "Clitic Doubling and other issues of the syntax/semantics interface in Romance DPs". Arbeitspapier 128, 43–64. Konstanz: Fachbereich Sprachwissenschaft der Universität Konstanz.


Presentations and Posters

Romero Heredero, Diego. 2019. Interacción entre aspecto léxico y marcador diferencial de objeto en español. Talk that will be presented at XLVIII Simposio de la SEL, CSIC. Madrid, January 2019.

Romero Heredero, Diego. 2018. Diachronic variation of the differential object marking in Spanish: the role of telicity. Talk presented at the Workshop on Differential Object Marking in Romance – towards microvariation. INalCO. Paris, November 2018.

Romero Heredero, Diego. 2018. Influence of telicity in DOM in Spanish. Poster presented at the 2nd Crete Summer School of Linguistics. University of Crete. Rethymno, July 2018.

Romero Heredero, Diego. 2018. La influencia de la telicidad en la expansión de la marca diferencial de objeto en español. Paper presented at Kolloquium: DOM in Spanish - diachronic change and synchronic variation. Zürich, June 2018.

Romero Heredero, Diego. 2017. Interaction of nominal and verbal features for DOM in Spanish. Talk presented at a.r.t.e.s. Kolloquium. Universität zu Köln. Köln, October 2017.

Leonetti, Manuel & Diego Romero. 2016. Pronombres tácitos frente a pronombres explícitos: gramática y procesamiento. Paper presented at CILG 2016: 12th International Conference on General Linguistics. Universidad de Alcalá, Alcalá de Henares, May 2016.


Organized Workshops

12th International Conference on General Linguistics, Universidad de Alcalá, May 2016 (collaborator).


Teaching Experience

Winter semester

Advanced Seminar: La interfaz sintaxis-semántica.


Cover photo: Diego Romero Heredero / Portrait photo: Patric Fouad