Deaf geographies, and other worlds.

PhD opportunity on the boundary between gesture and language

I wouldn’t normally post jobs… but this is a subject that I’m particularly interested in, so I’m eager to help Adam recruit someone to it… my own view is that sign languages, and the fuzzy boundaries that they cast between language and gesture, disrupt and question hearing-world assumptions (particularly those held by more traditional Chomskian linguists) of what language is.

If you’re at all interested in this, then please contact Adam.

Pointing gestures project, PhD studentship in Linguistics, La Trobe University

Summary: A three-year PhD scholarship ($28,672 per annum) is available for research linked to the ‘When do gestures become linguistic? Understanding the gesture-language interface through a corpus-based study of pointing signs in signed languages’ project in the Linguistics Discipline Research Program at La Trobe University. This is a three year project (July 2014-June 2017), funded by an Australian Research Council (ARC) Discovery Project grant to Macquarie University (Sydney, Australia), La Trobe University (Melbourne, Australia), University College London (London, UK) and Radboud University (Nijmegen, The Netherlands).
This project will use corpus-based and experimental studies to compare pointing signs in three sign languages (in Australia, the UK and The Netherlands) with pointing gestures used by hearing non-signers in order to answer the question: What relationship do gestures have to language, both in speech and in sign? The PhD project will focus on a topic related to pointing gestures used by hearing non-signers and how they compare to pointing signs used in deaf signers.

The successful applicant will:

* have a recent appropriate undergraduate degree and/or masters-level qualification (preferably in linguistics or psychology)
* ideally should have undergone relevant research training or experience
* ideally have some competence in a sign language (strongly favored)

To apply, please submit a CV and a cover letter, addressing how you meet criteria listed above. In particular, include details about an undergraduate or postgraduate thesis, or any relevant publications, as evidence of research training.

Closing date: 9th February, 2015

Position Enquiries: For more information about this scholarship or the related project, please email Associate Professor Adam Schembri – a.schembri@latrobe.edu.au


This entry was posted on January 9, 2015 by in Musings.
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