Sarah Thomason

LSA 212: Language contact and language change

After receiving my Ph.D. in 1968, I taught Slavic linguistics at Yale and then general linguistics at the University of Pittsburgh. Since January 1999 I've been at the University of Michigan. I have worked with the Salish & Pend d'Oreille Culture Committee in St. Ignatius, Montana, since 1981, compiling a dictionary and other materials for the tribe's Salish language program. My current research focuses on contact-induced language change and Salishan linguistics. Among my major publications are "Chinook Jargon in areal and historical context" (Language, 1983), "Genetic relationship and the case of Ma'a (Mbugu)" (Studies in African Linguistics, 1983), "Before the Lingua Franca: Pidgin Arabic in the eleventh century A.D." (with Alaa Elgibali, Lingua, 1986), Language contact, creolization, and genetic linguistics (with Terrence Kaufman, University of California Press, 1988, 1991), Language contact: an introduction (Edinburgh University Press & Georgetown University Press, 2001), and Truncation in Montana Salish (with Lucy Thomason, 2004). I was editor of Language 1988-1994. I've taught at three previous LSA Linguistic Institutes (as the Collitz Professor in 1999), and I'm currently Vice President/President Elect of the LSA. I was President of the Society for the Study of the Indigenous Languages of the Americas in 2000 and served as Chair of the AAAS Linguistics & Language Sciences section in 1996 and Secretary of the section 2001-2005.

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