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H/F PHD Student - analysis & documentation of a Nigerian language

This offer is available in the following languages:
Français - Anglais

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General information

Reference : UMR8135-JEAZER-005
Workplace : VILLEJUIF
Date of publication : Wednesday, May 06, 2020
Scientific Responsible name : Mark VAN DE VELDE
Type of Contract : PhD Student contract / Thesis offer
Contract Period : 36 months
Start date of the thesis : 1 October 2020
Proportion of work : Full time
Remuneration : 2 135,00 € gross monthly

Description of the thesis topic

Domains: grammatical analysis; linguistic documentation

The successful candidate will produce a grammatical analysis, a lexical database of at least 1400 entries and a linguistic documentation (audio and video recordings of a wide range of genres, with transcriptions and metadata) of a previously unstudied language spoken in the Benue Valley in Nigeria. The language will be chosen in agreement between the caniddate and their supervisors, possibly after a pilot study.

Work Context

The position is funded by the thèses internationales programme of the National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS). The successful candidate will be required to spend about half of their time at the French Institute for Research in Africa (IFRA), which will host them during their field work in Nigeria. IFRA has offices at the campus of the University of Ibadan. In France, they will be based at LLACAN in Villejuif, a suburb of Paris. LLACAN is a research unit of CNRS and the National Institute for Oriental Languages and Cultures (INaLCO), that specialises in the languages of Africa.
Supervision in Paris and in the field will be provided by Dmitry Idiatov and Mark Van de Velde, as well as by other members of the fieldwork oriented research unit LLACAN. We have a lot of experience with linguistic field work in Nigeria and a large network of local community representatives.
The successful candidate will enter the PhD program of INALCO in Paris. They are expected to publish in peer-reviewed journals and to obtain a PhD degree in ideally three years.

Constraints and risks

CNRS attaches utmost importance to the safety of its researches. Any travel to areas with potential security risks is subject to prior authorization based on a thorough risk assessment by CNRS and the French ministry of Foreign Affairs. In case of security risks in the immediate region where the language is spoken, the research in Nigeria will take place in Ibadan or at the most appropriate safe location in the general area.

Additional Information

Candidates are required to:
- have an MA degree (or equivalent) in linguistics by the start date
- have excellent command of English
- be ready to gain good working knowledge of French

Candidates are expected to:
- have received thorough training in phonetics, phonology and morphosyntax
- be ready to conduct extended research stays in Nigeria

Ideally, candidates also:
- received training in field methods and linguistic documentation
- have knowledge of African linguistics
- have knowledge of linguistic typology
- have some experience analyzing languages without a written tradition

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