Linguistic anthropology is the anthropological subfield that focuses on language and its importance to understanding human history, culture and biology. Linguistic anthropology shares many overlapping interests with linguistics in general but is characterized by an emphasis on fieldwork and connections to larger anthropological understandings of humans. Specializations within linguistic anthropology include the documentation of minority and indigenous languages, the relationship of language to social structures (gender, class, ethnicity) and the relationship between historical linguistics and archaeology.
Linguistics and linguistic anthropology at University at Florida are taught collaboratively between the Department of Anthropology and the Department of Linguistics. University of Florida faculty conduct linguistic research in the United States, Mexico, India, Southeast Asia, West Africa and East Africa. Their research interests include:
- Language documentation
- Historical linguistics
- Phonology and phonetics
Graduate and undergraduates students with an interest in linguistic anthropology are encouraged to pursue coursework in both anthropology and linguistics, as advised by UF faculty. The M.A. and Ph.D. programs in Anthropology allow considerable flexibility in designing rigorous programs that are responsive to student needs.
Students interested in applying for graduate study are strongly encouraged to contact the faculty with which they would like to work.
Meet our resident linguistic anthropologist, Dr. George Aaron Broadwell. His research interests include syntactic theory and language and cognition. Area specialization is American Indian languages, with research in Choctaw, Timucua, Copala Triqui and Zapotec.