Linguistic Anthropology is the comparative study of the ways in which language shapes social life. On this website, you can find information about the SLA, how to contact us, and about our journal. Be sure to also check out our blog, and other helpful resources.
The Edward Sapir Book Prize was established in 2001 and is awarded to a book that makes the most significant contribution to our understanding of language in society, or the ways in which language mediates historical or contemporary sociocultural processes. Beginning in 2012, the Sapir Prize has been awarded annually. The following 12 books have been [...]
Don’t forget to vote in AAA and SLA elections by 5:00 pm Eastern Time on May 31st.
AN News: “At the Crossroads of Linguistics and Anthropology: Disciplinary perspectives on language documentation” by Lise Dobrin (University of Virginia) and Niko Besnier (University of Amsterdam)
Anthropology News Article by Lise Dobrin and Niko Besnier For a long time in anthropology, the documentation of languages on the brink of disappearing was negatively tainted as salvage: quaint in its Boasian particularism, inappropriately objectifying speakers as passive vehicles of an authoritatively rendered ‘tradition’, naïve in uncritically adopting the folk category of ‘language’ as [...]
AN News: “Silent Meditation: Speech, power, and social justice” by the Committee on Language & Social Justice
Anthropology News Article by Netta Avineri, Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey; Jena Barchas-Lichtenstein, Independent Scholar; Robin Conley, Marshall University; Mariam Durrani, University of Pennsylvania; Kathleen Riley, Fordham University The AAA Committee for Human Rights Task Group/Society for Linguistic Anthropology Committee on Language & Social Justice is committed to collaborating with one another to [...]
The American Anthropological Association has passed a resolution condemning the use of Native American mascots unless appropriate consultation has taken place. The move comes in part through the efforts of the SLA Committee on Language and Social Justice, in conjunction with other AAA sections.
The submission deadline is November 6, 2015.
Created and awarded for the first time by the SLA in 2014, this award honors an SLA member or members for work that effectively impacts public awareness of social issues involving language and communication and/or represents a significant service to a particular community outside of the academy. Applicants may self-nominate or consent to the nomination of others.
Anthropology News Article One of the perks offered to faculty at Nazarbayev University is a free campus apartment. When I was hired last year, I was pleased to be offered this accommodation. Not only did it mean not having to pay rent, but it meant not having to house-hunt in the unfamiliar cultural and linguistic [...]
The annual business meeting of the SLA in Washington DC was attended by about 150 people, and proved to be a lively and informative event. President Paul Kroskrity reported on two areas of general concern: increasing public engagement around issues of linguistic racism and the mentoring of junior colleagues within SLA itself. Paul reported on [...]
On behalf of William Leap (American University), Co-editor, Journal of Language and Sexuality: The Journal of Language and Sexuality (www.benjamins.com/#catalog/journals/jls) is now in its fifth year of publication. JL&S explores the discursive formations of sexuality, including (but not limited to) sexual desire, sexual identities, sexual politics, and sexuality in diaspora. JL&S addresses linguistic work in the widest possible sense, e.g. sociolinguistics, anthropological [...]
A list of links shared by SLA members and correspondents, including bilingual education in Columbia, an oral history of segregation in Alaska, a Faroe Islands documentary, and more. Links do not reflect official opinion of the SLA, its officers or members.
Annie Claus’s essay, “How a professional writer improved my academic writing” at Savage Minds is quite useful. She counsels academics to resist overly long sentences, to vary the structure of paragraphs, and to reflect on each element of the paper and what it contributes to communicating the message. I differ with Claus, however, in cautioning against a particular set of words. At the risk of being labeled a positivist, I’ve compared the frequency of “insipid grammatical markers” in American Anthropologist, the Corpus of Contemporary American English, and the work of Joan Didion. The results, to paraphrase an academic writing cliche, are a bit more complicated.