Alor-Pantar language documentation: Post Doc, Leiden University, Netherlands

I Arka wayan.arka at ANU.EDU.AU
Mon Jul 13 19:06:59 UTC 2009

Leiden University 
Department: Leiden University Centre for Linguistics  (LUCL) 
Web Address: 
Job Rank: Post Doc  
Specialty Areas: Typology; Languages of New  Guinea/Indonesia; Language Documentation; Deictic systems; Numerical  expressions
Applications are invited for the position of  Postdoctoral Research Fellow, for three years, available from 1 October 2009 (a  later starting date is negotiable). 
This post is for the project 'Alor and  Pantar Languages: Origins and Theoretical Impacts', funded by the Netherlands  Organisation of Scientific Research (NWO) as part of European Science  Foundation's EuroBABEL scheme, and involves coordinated projects in Leiden, the  University of Surrey, and Fairbanks (Alaska). The Leiden project director is Dr  Marian Klamer.
The job will involve working collaboratively  with members of the partner projects, collecting primary data in the Alor-Pantar  languages on deictic systems, numerical expressions, spatial expressions, word  classes and morphosyntactic categories, as well as maintaining a linguistic  database and contributing to joint papers.
Candidates should have PhD in hand or expect  to complete all requirements for the PhD prior to appointment. Applicants should  have a solid background in the languages of Indonesia and/or New Guinea, solid  fieldwork skills, in addition to strong analytical skills that can contribute to  the integration of documentation into theoretical frameworks. Candidates should  have a working knowledge of Indonesian/Malay or a willingness to learn the  language. Candidates must be willing to travel and conduct fieldwork in remote  and demanding environments in Indonesia. Candidates must have the ability to  work independently while functioning as part of a research team. Candidates must  be fluent in English. 
The Project: 
The project aims to document and analyze the  Alor-Pantar languages by integrating existing documentary materials, new  fieldwork, and typological analysis. The Alor-Pantar languages are a group of  15-20 non-Austronesian('Papuan') languages spoken on several islands in eastern  Indonesia. They are of special interest because they have no established genetic  relatives.
Documentation of these languages has  recently begun, but the material has yet to be analyzed in a rigorous fashion,  and the theoretical linguistic community is largely unaware of these data. The  implications for language classification, migration patterns, and  morphosyntactic and semantic typology remain largely unexplored. 
The project aims to document and analyze the  AP languages, collecting high quality archival data to deepen our understanding  of human language. It is divided into three Individual Projects: Extended  Documentation (Leiden), Word Class Typology (Surrey) and Linguistic Prehistory  (Fairbanks). 
The aims of the Leiden project are to  collect additional documentation on (i) Reference to entities in space: How is  the spatial domain structured by speakers of Alor-Pantar languages? How do they  construct locative expressions? How are landscape terms and traditional place  names used?, and (ii) Numeral expressions: the structure and distribution of  numerals, ordinals and numeral classifiers, the concepts they encode, their  historical source, and their functional and lexical properties. 
The project will be conducted by an  international research team, including senior researchers, post doctoral  fellows, and graduate students in the US, Netherlands, United Kingdom and  counterparts in Indonesia. Project members will conduct targeted fieldwork in  Alor and Pantar in each of the project years. Fieldwork data will be synthesized  to address the theoretical questions posed by the project.  
Applications must contain: 
- a cover letter indicating research interests  
- a curriculum vitae (including list of  publications) 
- the names of three  referees (including their email and telephone numbers) 
- two sample publications 
Conditions of Employment: 
Employment conditions (salary, benefits,  etc.) are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch  Universities. Maximum salary Euros / month: 4374 (Onderzoeker 3). Employment  basis: Temporary for specified period.
See also:  
Application Deadline: 30 Aug 2009  
Email Address for Applications:  vacature at  
Vacancy number:  9-143 
Contact Information: 
Dr Marian Klamer  <m.a.f.klamer at> 

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