Fall 2017 Courses

IS 750 Topics in Biocultural Diversity and Conservation

Mondays 3:00-5:30 pm

This seminar introduces students to the field of biocultural diversity, emphasizing trans-disciplinary approaches to understanding the interrelationships between culture, environment, and language. This course features lectures and discussions by key UH Mānoa faculty in anthropology, biology, botany, Hawaiian studies, natural resources, linguistics, literature, law, and more. The course is open to students in all disciplines and is designed to foster new research collaborations. [Laulima | syllabus]

LING 640G: Language, Landscape, and Space

Wednesdays 3:00-5:30 pm

This course provides an introduction to the study of the complex inter-relationships between language, landscape, and space. We examine the way that spatial concepts--particularly those linked to the landscape--are encoded in grammar. Topics to be discussed include spatial cognition, frames of reference, spatial grammar, directional systems, wayfinding, and ethnophysiography. In addition, we will provide a hands-on introduction to tools for geolinguistic documentation, including GPS mapping, GIS software, and participating mapping. We will consider case studies from a diverse selection of languages in order to better understand the range of ways that landscape is encoded in human language. Wherever possible we will draw on related disciplines--including geography, philosophy, ecology, and anthropology--in order to move toward an ethnoscience of landscape which seeks to understand human conceptualization of land, water, and other physical aspects the natural environment. Students will complete a hands-on final project which applied some of the research methods discussed in the class. [Laulima | syllabus]

Spring 2017 Courses

LING 720 Language Typology

Tuesday and Thursday, 1:30-2:45 PM (CRN 89180), Moore 204

This course explores the structural diversity of the world’s languages from a functional-typological perspective. We focus on grammatical structures, including word order patterns; lexical categories; alignment and grammatical relations; voice and valence constructions; clause combining strategies; encoding of of tense/aspect/mood; relative clauses; and subordination. Some attention is also given to quantitative typology and to explanations for the distributions of typological features. Students will focus on a particular language and provide regular reports throughout the class on relevant typological features of that language. [Laulima | syllabus]