Jim Lavine

Jim Lavine

Professor of Linguistics and Russian Studies
Director of Russian Studies | Chair of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics.
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About Jim Lavine


Syntactic Theory, Syntax/Argument-Structure Interface, Syntax/Semantics of Event Structure, Case Theory, Predication, Slavic Comparative Linguistics, Lithuanian Syntax


  • Ph.D. Princeton University, 2000 Joint Degree: Program in Linguistics & Department of Slavic Languages
  • M.A. Harvard University, Russian Research Center, 1992 Slavic Linguistics, Less Commonly Taught Languages (Czech, Ukrainian, Georgian)

Research Positions

  • Leading Researcher, "Valency, Argument Realisation and Grammatical Relations in Baltic" 2013–2015, University of Vilnius
  • Visiting Fellow in Linguistics, Spring 2005, Summer 2007, Summer 2011, Summer 2012 Princeton University, Program in Linguistics
  • Visiting Postdoctoral Scholar, 2000-2001 Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Linguistics and Philosophy

Other Activities

Ad Hoc Reviewer: Journal of Linguistics, Journal of Slavic Linguistics, Baltic Linguistics, Formal Approaches to Slavic Linguistics, Formal Description of Slavic Languages, Natural Language and Linguistic Theory, Lingua, John Benjamins Linguistik Aktuell Series AATSEEL annual meeting, Linguistics Division

Vice President (Linguistics), American Association of Teachers of Slavic and East European Languages (AATSEEL) — 2010-2013

Member, Editorial Board, Journal of Slavic Linguistics

Personal website

Courses Taught

  • LING 105 Linguistic Analysis: Sounds & Words
  • LING 110 Linguistic Analysis: Sentences & Meaning
  • LING 210 Language and Race
  • LING 215 Syntax
  • LING 216 Semantics
  • LING 315 Advanced Syntax
  • LING 340 Typology and Universals
  • LING 390 Independent Study

Selected Publications

(2019). (Lavine, James E. and Leonard H. Babby).“A New Argument for the Lexical Underspecification of Causers.”Linguistic Inquiry 50.4: 803-824.

(2017). “Syntactic Change and the Rise of Transitivity: The Case of the Polish and Ukrainian –no/-to Construction.” Studies in Polish Linguistics 12: 173-198.

(2016). "Variable Argument Realization in Lithuanian Impersonals." Argument Realization in Baltic. Ed. Axel Holvoet and Nicole Nau. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

(2014). "Anti-Burzio Predicates: From Russian and Ukrainian to Icelandic." Journal of the Moscow State University for the Humanities. Philology Series.

(2013). "Passives and Near-Passives in Balto-Slavic: On the Survival of Accusative." Non-Canonical Passives, eds. Artemis Alexiadou and Florian Schäfer. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 185-211.

(2012). "Remarks on Object Case in the North Russian Perfect." Slavica Bergensia 11, Special Issue: Contemporary Approaches to Dialectology: The Area of North, Northwest Russian, and Belarusian Vernaculars.

(2011). "What does Structural Accusative Mean? An Argument Against the Aspectual Theory." Formal Approaches to Slavic Linguistics 19, eds. John Bailyn et al. Ann Arbor: Michigan Slavic Publications, 66-84.

(2010). "Mood and a Transitivity Restriction in Lithuanian: The Case of the Inferential Evidential." Baltic Linguistics. 1: 115-142

(2010). "Case and Events in Ukrainian Experiencer Predicates." Formal Approaches to Slavic Linguistics 18, eds. Wayles Browne et al. Ann Arbor:: Michigan Slavic Publications, 285-300.

(2010). "Case and Events in Transitive Impersonals." Journal of Slavic Linguistics 18.1: 101-130.

Further Information

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