The Frank J. McLoraine Distinguished Service Professor, Department of Linguistics and Humanities Collegiate Division
Office: Wieboldt 411
Phone: (773) 702-8531
Dr. Mufwene currently works on language evolution, focusing on language speciation (including the emergence of creole language varieties, of African-American English, and of indigenized Englishes), on the phylogenetic emergence of language, and on colonization, globalization, and the vitality of languages (including language birth and death). He is also exploring ways in which economics bears on language vitality and language influences economic development. His earlier work was on structural aspects of Gullah, of Caribbean English creoles (chiefly Jamaican and Guyanese Creoles), and of African American English, as well as the morphosyntax of Bantu (especially Kituba, Lingala, and Kiyansi). He was trained in lexical semantics and lexicography (the focus of his earliest scholarship), in syntax, and in language contact. He has been at Chicago since January 1992.