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James A. Crippen

PhD Candidate

Linguistics

Faculty of Arts

Research Themes: 

Language, Sustainability and Transnationalism, The Communicating Mind and Body

James A. Crippen (Dzéiwsh) is a PhD candidate working on the syntax and information structure of his heritage language Tlingit, a critically endangered language of Alaska, the Yukon and British Columbia. He earned his undergraduate and master’s degrees from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa and came to UBC in 2010. His expertise is concentrated in formal morphosyntax, historical linguistics, language documentation, the Na-Dene language family, and languages of northwestern North America. His current research spans a wide range of syntactic and semantic issues including event structure and aspect, ergativity, clause type and embedding, information structure in syntax, nonverbal predication, the semantics of motion, compositional morphology, and the structure of the lexicon. He also works with anthropologists on many aspects of Tlingit culture including onomastics, geography, traditional and modern discourse, prehistoric and modern interaction with neighbouring First Nations, and cultural and linguistic revitalization.

Research Interests

  • Formal morphosyntax, historical linguistics, language documentation, the Na-Dene language family, and languages of northwestern North America.
  • Current research: a wide range of syntactic and semantic issues including event structure and aspect, ergativity, clause type and embedding, information structure in syntax, nonverbal predication, the semantics of motion, compositional morphology, and the structure of the lexicon.
  • Tlingit culture: onomastics, geography, traditional and modern discourse, prehistoric and modern interaction with neighbouring First Nations, and cultural and linguistic revitalization.