My research interests fall under three broad categories: linguistic variation, language and education, linguistics and social justice. You can read about some of my current projects below.
My research is primarily concerned with the ways in which languages vary from each other and how they change over time and space. I’m particularly interested in what happens in areas in which multiple languages come into contact: how do the languages influence each other? What changes? What stays the same.
I am currently involved in three externally-funded projects:
Dialectology in Bantu Languages: Variation in Bemba across phonology and morphosyntax. Funded through a British Academy/Leverhulme Trust Small Grant. This is a joint project with Professor Nancy Kula.
Eroding dichotomies: description, analysis and publishing in African linguistics. Funded as part of the British Academy Writing Workshops scheme. This is a joint project with Dr David Barasa, Professor Lutz Marten and Dr Kristina Riedel.
Language and education
Bringing the outside in: Merging local language and literacy practices to enhance classroom learning and achievement. Funded by the Global Challenges Research Fund and is a joint project with Professor Nancy Kula, Dr Tracey Costley, Dr Mompoloki Bagwasai, Dr Gastor Mapunda, Dr Joseph Mwansa. Visit our project website to find out more!
I am also a named researcher on the project ‘Typological study of micro-variation in Bantu’ (Phase 2) which is under the direction of Dr Daisuke Shinagawa at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies.
Much of my research examines languages spoken in East Africa. I have spent about a year in the Kondoa District of central Tanzania, working with speakers of the Bantu language Rangi. My home for this time was the beautiful collection of villages around a lake called Haubi.
I have also worked on the Bantu languages Simbiti, Ngoreme and Kuria in the town of Musoma, nestled between Lake Victoria and the Serengeti National Park.
Variation in Sesotho and Setswana as spoken in the Free State (2019-2020). Funded by the British Academy Newton Mobility Scheme. This is was joint project with Dr Kristina Riedel of the University of the Free State, South Africa.
I was an affiliated researcher on the Leverhulme-Trust-funded project Morphosyntactic variation in Bantu: Typology, contact and change run by Lutz Marten at SOAS from September 2014-March 2018.
I was also involved in the project Linguistic Variation as an Indicator of Historical Relations and Language Contact: A Comparative grammar of four Mara Bantu languages (Tanzania). This project was funded by the Kone Foundation and based at Helsinki University under the guidance of Professor Lotta Aunio.