PhD student Justin Royer is in Guatemala with Fieldwork Lab Chuj consultant Magdalena Torres. Here they are, together with Magdalena’s husband Mateo Pablo in Petanak. Mateo Pablo is one of few survivors of the massacre that took place in this community in 1982––one of many massacre against Maya communities by the military during the war. His experiences are the subject of the documentary film Haunted Land, by Montreal-based film-maker Mary Ellen Davis.
Category Archives: Travel
I spent last week at the first workshop on The Morphosyntax and Semantics of Headless Relative Clauses in Mesoamerican Languages, at the Centro de Investigaciones y Estudios Superiores en Antropología Social (CIESAS), in San Cristóbal de las Casas, Mexico. I’ll head back to CIESAS in January, where I’ll spend the second half of my sabbatical as a visiting researcher.
Current and past McGill students are spending most of June in Patzún, Guatemala in connection with the University of Maryland’s Guatemala Field Station. For the first two weeks they took Kaqchikel immersion classes, and and spent the second two weeks conducting research on Mayan languages.
Incoming PhD student Justin Royer, and recent BA graduate Sarah Mihuc, worked together with Juana Gómez on a Chuj documentation project led by Jessica and Pedro Mateo Pedro.
The group also presented work at the Universidad del Valle de Guatemala, Altiplano:
I just returned from CoLang: The Institute for Collaborative Language Documentation, hosted this summer at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. In addition to meeting lots of inspiring people, I took classes on various digital tools, consent and intellectual property rights, and oral annotation methods.
From the press release:
The Institute of Collaborative Language Research (CoLang) has gathered since 20th June, 2016, at the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF). In attendance are language activists, learners, linguists, speakers, students, teachers, elders, wiki bloggers, archivists, and publishers hailing from the Miyako/Ryukyuan, Mohawk, Tlingit, Potawatomi, Tunica/Biloxi, Tututni, Ahtna, Hän, Navajo/Dineì, Dene, Denaakk’e, Unangam Tunuu, Blackfoot/Blackfeet, Wendat, Karuk, Catalan, Kristang, Chickasaw, Seminole, Creek, and Ekegusii language communities, among others.
Congratulations to Martha Schwarz, who will be spending the summer doing fieldwork in India through a MITACS Globalink Research Award. She will be staying in the Nepali-speaking Darjeeling region, collecting data on Nepali ergativity and Nepali laryngeal contrasts. The ergativity project is co-supervised by Ayesha Kidwai (Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi). Martha recently present work on Nepali ergativity at the MOTH Syntax Workshop at University of Toronto Mississauga.
I recently returned from a 2-week trip to Chiapas with Lauren Clemens (SUNY Albany), Ryan Bennett (Yale), and Cora Lesure (McGill). Together with Ch’ol-speakers and linguists Nicolás Arcos López (Universidad Intercultural de Tabasco) and Morelia Vázquez Martinez (ITS Macuspana) we ran two experiments in two different towns. One was a perceptual study (by Ryan), and the other was a production experiment designed to test focus-marking strategies. The latter was based on an experiment designed by Sasha Calhoun for Samoan, but with new pictures created by McGill undergraduate Blare Coughlin. The pictures are available for public use, with credit to Blare, and can be downloaded here. Stay tuned for results!