Lexicon: Kaqchikel Maya
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Lexicon: Kaqchikel Maya

For our Wednesday, September 16 Lexicon program, we will be welcoming Phil Duncan, Assistant Professor at the University of Kansas Department of Linguistics. Phil will be discussing the Kaqchikel language. The program will take place from 7-7:45 p.m. on the Zoom platform, and will be recorded and simultaneously broadcast to Facebook.

 Export to Your Calendar 9/23/2020
When: Wednesday, September 23, 2020
7-7:45 p.m. CT
Where: Zoom
United States
Contact: Evan Verploegh

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About Lexicon
There are around 6500 languages spoken throughout the world today, but how many can we name, much less speak? The International Relations Council is proud to present Lexicon, a weekly digital interactive program that will introduce you to a language you may not know much about. Each week, IRC members and friends will offer some history and context on a different language, let you sample the look and sounds of the language, and give you some hints on where you can experience more of the language and the cultures it represents – and you just might walk away with a new word or two. Linguists of all levels welcome!

About Phil Duncan
Within morphosyntax and field linguistics, my research has explored the types of architectures that are implicated in various constructions across the clausal spine, from verbal structures to focus constructions. I'm particularly interested in the role of the syntactic component of grammar in generating structures & meanings, and how it interfaces with other systems that make part of what we call language. Most of my work within these sub-disciplines has been with Indigenous languages (particularly in the Americas & West Africa), recognizing their inherent value & the need for diversity in linguistics to understand human language(s).

My current research takes a holistic approach to the morphosyntax of Me'phaa, an Otomanguean language from Guerrero, Mexico, attending to the interrelatedness of verbal structures, semantics, & clausal structures. I consider how verbs in the language effectively image core geometries, providing a basis from which meanings and verb-initial structures are built, and an explanation for the language's complex manifestation of ergativity.

Beyond generative linguistics, I also investigate aspects of language use that tend to fall within the purview of sociocultural linguistics, in particular issues related to identity, ideologies, & discrimination. Most of my work with a sociocultural flair has been done using methods from the discourse-historical and sociocognitive approaches to Critical Discourse Studies, as well as social semiotics.