Life in the field

Lise Dobrin
Tim Thornes

Course days, time, and location:
6/22, 6/23, & 6/24
3:30 - 5:15
Ramey Lounge

Course Information:
Coming soon.

Instructor(s) Bio:
Lise Dobrin is Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Linguistics Program at the University of Virginia. Her fieldwork experience is with the Arapesh languages, spoken on the Sepik coast of Papua New Guinea; she now has an ongoing language documentation and archiving project based on that work (see She has engaged extensively with issues of social process and ethics in linguistic and ethnographic research, and has expertise in the institutional review of cross-cultural fieldwork protocols. In addition to her linguistic scholarship and disciplinary activism, she has been doing work in the history of anthropology, using the published writings, unpublished fieldnotes and correspondence, and biographies of earlier researchers on Arapesh language and culture (Margaret Mead and Reo Fortune) to reconstruct how they set up their fieldsites and conducted themselves, to see how their research was affected by personal factors, and to explore the way documentary projects are situated in history and culture.

Tim Thornes volunteered to work with the last speaker of Yahooskin, an undocumented dialect of Northern Paiute, in the summer of 1994.  Together they produced a beginner’s phrase book and ethno-historical study for the Klamath Tribes of south-central Oregon.  He has since worked with speakers of the Wadateka’a (Burns Paiute) and other area dialects from eastern Oregon and northern Nevada.  In Burns, he co-founded a language preservation group called Neme Apichaade Semenna (People Speaking Together) and published weekly blurbs in the Tu Kwa Hone newsletter on the language while also working on his dissertation, “A Northern Paiute Grammar with Texts,” which he defended in 2003. He has presented and published widely on aspects of Northern Paiute grammar and has served as an instructor with the Northwest Indian Languages Institute (NILI) and the University of Oregon’s Summer Session in Language Documentation. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Linguistics in theDepartment of Writing at the University of Central Arkansas in Conway.

                                                        Updated June 21, 2010 12:46 pm