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I am a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Linguistics at McGill University. I have a PhD in linguistics from Cornell University with graduate minors in American Indian and Indigenous Studies and Cognitive Science. In the fall of 2018, I was a visiting scholar at the DFG Collaborative Research Center at Heinrich-Heine-Universität, Düsseldorf. I received my bachelors in linguistics and Russian studies from McGill University in 2012.
My research program brings together syntax, semantics and morphology, rooted in a strong commitment to fieldwork and language documentation. I investigate possible structural variations crosslinguistically and how these structures interface with semantic computation. My theoretical analyses draw on data collected from fieldwork with understudied languages, namely Ch'ol (Mayan, Mexico) and Mi'gmaq (Algonquian, Canada). I have funded this work with various grants including a doctoral dissertation research improvement grant jointly funded by NSF's Documenting Endangered Languages and Linguistics programs. Here is a link to my dissertation.
2017. MA Cornell University - Linguistics
2012. BA (Honours) McGill University - Double Major in Linguistics and Russian Studies
Ch'ol is a Mayan language spoken in Southern Mexico. Ethnologue estimates the number of speakers at 222,000. It is a head-marking, ergative-absolutive, predicate-initial language. Most of my fieldwork has been done with the Tumbala dialect of Ch'ol in the ejido of San Miguel, Chiapas, Mexico. Check out the Lakty'añ Ch'ol blog for work on documenting the Ch'ol language, including through a National Geographic Explorers Grant and two Engaged Cornell grants. This vimeo page contains some videos in Ch'ol. Here is one about some naughty monkeys, here is one on making empanadas, and here is a scary one about a tiger. In 2018, along with collaborators from the Intercultural University of Tabasco and the Center for Indigenous Literature, Art and Languages of Chiapas we put on a workshop in Salto de Agua, Chiapas on Ch'ol for Ch'ol-speaking students and teachers. Here is a video summary of the workshop.
Mi'gmaq is an Algonquian Language Spoken in Eastern Canada. Mi'gmaq is a polysynthetic language with a very rich verb morphology. I have collaborated with Mi'gmaq language teachers and developed a number of resources. Check out the Mi'gmaq Grammar Wiki for info on grammatical features in Mi'gmaq. To learn some basic phrases in Mi'gmaq, check out these flashcards on Quizlet. For more information on the Mi'gmaq project see the Mi'gmaq Research Partnership homepage.