R. (Ruth) Wester, MA

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Diachronic linguistics, language contact, morphology, Papuan linguistics.

PhD Research

My PhD research “Proto-morphology and internal morphological diversification of the Awyu-Ndumut family of Papuan languages”, started in September 2009, has as its focus the nine or so languages of the Awyu-Ndumut family spoken by around 35,000 people in the Digul river basin in South New Guinea, Indonesia.
The roman catholic priest P. Drabbe described five Awyu-Ndumut languages in the 1950’s: Pisa (1947), Shiaxa and Jenimu (1950), Mandobo (1959) and South Wambon (1959). A few decennia later, L.J. de Vries documented North Wambon (1992), Kombai (1993) and, together with G. van Enk, Korowai (1997).
Basing myself on these descriptions, I first work on charting the great morphological diversity found within the Awyu-Ndumut languages. Next, I reconstruct proto-morphological forms and search for diachronic pathways that give insight into the development of Awyu-Ndumut languages and Papuan languages in general.
My PhD research is part of the larger project “The Awyu-Dumut family of Papuan languages in its linguistic and cultural context”.


Language Typology BA, study year 2010-2011
Describing Morphosyntax MA, study year 2010-2011


LinguistList: http://linguistlist.org/index.cfm
LOT Awyu-Dumut page: http://www.lotschool.nl/index.php?p=4&id=189

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