Academic Senate 51st Annual Faculty Research Lecture Honors:
Professor Sandra Chung
“Language Through the Lens of Diversity.”
The ease and efficiency with which children acquire their first language(s) reveals that the capacity to know and use language is deeply human. It also raises the possibility that all languages have the same design–universal characteristics that make language acquisition possible. Are these views challenged by the great diversity of the world’s languages? In this talk, Sandra Chung explores this question from the perspective of Chamorro, an understudied language spoken in Micronesia. She suggests that while language diversity is real, language universals emerge when ‘small’ languages are investigated in the same depth as first-world languages.
About the Faculty Research Lecture: The Faculty Research Lecture started in 1967. Lecturers are nominated by the Committee on Faculty Research Lecture based on a distinguished record in research and asked to deliver a lecture upon a topic of their choice.