Juan Uriagereka                                          

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I am interested in the ‘biolinguistics’ program, from various perspectives. In graduate school I was trained as a syntactician, although my previous studies had not concentrated on linguistics. It is through my earlier interests in economics and biology that I engaged in architectural and foundational aspects of language since the moment I wrote my dissertation On Government.

 

I see the ‘language faculty’ as presenting itself in three broad domains: its evolution in the species, its development in the individual, and its use in actual performance –where we gather most our data from. Data can in principle come from all those domains, and as our understanding of the psychological, neuro-biological and molecular bases of language deepen, there is hope in complementing our observational base with new sorts of insights.

 

In my work, I study syntactic patterns with an eye on trying to understand what they may tell us about the broader questions that my research pursues. I have specialized mostly in Indo-European (particularly Romance) languages and Basque, presenting analyses from these arenas in a comparative way. I often attempt to relate conclusions reached in the area of syntax to work in the evolution of language or a variety of its performative aspects.

 

I consider it the responsibility of any intellectual to offer their expertise to society, especially when their views can help shape public policy and address social injustice. Most of my outreach activities concentrate on cultural politics and the defense of human diversity.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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                                                                                                                                                Last updated: 11/01/2006