Speculative fiction writer, translator, and editor



Showing 1-10 of 11.

Problematizing sociolinguistic authenticity: Considering power, oppression, and cultural appropriation in crossing

Although current analyses of linguistic crossing evaluate the immediate intra-speaker social consequences of crossing, the ways in which crossing reflects and reinforces broader social structures of power and oppression should also be taken into account, as the social meaning of crossing draws not only from immediate social interaction, but also from broader social projects. This study examines the appropriation of African American Vernacular English (AAVE) by Asian hip-hop group Far East Movement (FM). Using a dialect density measure (DDM), I show that FM uses AAVE at higher rates in sexualized party music versus nonsexualized ballads. I argue that this use of AAVE is a problematic subversion of Asian emasculation via the appropriation of Black masculinity.

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Asian American English

In this study, I will investigate the features of the Asian American English ethnolinguistic repertoire as per Newman & Wu (2011)’s conclusion. I will collect interview data from a number of Asian American speakers as well as white American speakers and analyze them for the features described in Newman & Wu (2011), Hanna (1997), Wong (2000), and Ito (2010). In collecting data from both Asian American and white American speakers, I plan on illuminating the differences between the two and asking whether Asian Americans simply “sound white”, or whether there are subtle sociophonetic cues that can differentiate the two.

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The interlanguage of L1 Chinese speakers learning English as a second language

In this paper, I will survey research from a variety of different linguistic subfields on characteristics of L2 English from adult L1 Chinese speakers. I will provide an overview of various phonological, morphological, syntactic, and pragmatic features of Chinese-English interlanguage. Although there may be variation between individuals in the realization of this interlanguage (see Rau et al. 2009 for a variationist approach to individual variation in the interlanguage), as well as variation depending on the type of L1 Chinese and type of L2 English, this survey should still provide some broad characteristics of Chinese-English interlanguage.

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Language and anti-Chinese racism in the media

Media never exists in a vacuum. Even stories that are set in distant science-fictional universes, or stories set in parallel universes that are free of institutionalized oppressions, are still created by people coming from worlds where institutionalized oppressions exist.
Media, then, not only reflects the concerns of its sociohistorical context, but also reinforces and reproduces these concerns: “Films both reflect and feed back into a larger socio-cultural landscape[.]” (Richardson 2010: viii) Given the overwhelming presence of various forms of media in contemporary culture—from television to movies to radio and online forms of all of these mediums, in addition to online-only media—it is not a stretch to say that media has a strong hand in helping us conceptualize our lives by providing us with the images and concepts on which we base our interpretations of our experiences. Richardson (2010) further argues that the America reflected in Hollywood is never a “real” and “accurate” representation of what America actually is, but is instead a representation of how America wishes to present itself and how America wishes to be seen by others.

Just as media can reflect the hopes and dreams of its root culture and provide an escape, media can also be complicit in perpetuating institutional oppressions. In this paper, I will specifically investigate anti-Asian racism, specifically anti-Chinese racism, in United States- based media; in particular, I will be exploring how language use and representation in movies and televisions reflects and reinforces anti-Chinese sentiments.

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Code-switching in FIREFLY

Our research is concerned with the significance of code-switching within the Firefly television series. We have two main questions: (1) How is code-switching used in Firefly? (2) What is the relevance of code-switching to characters’ identities? Does it mark ethnic identity, socioeconomic class, a broader east-west hybrid identity, or is it simply another decoration in the Firefly world?

We will begin with a brief background on code-switching and various attested uses of code-switching. We hypothesize that code-switching is a marked choice in Firefly, and we hypothesize that usage of code-switching is meant to reflect the hybridity of the east-west culture in the Firefly world. We found that usage of Mandarin typically aligned with both (1) socioeconomic class of the character, and (2) emotional content of the utterance, with code-switching more prevalent in utterances with high levels of negative emotion. We also found that the connection between language and ethnicity in Firefly was more difficult to draw than we initially expected.

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