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Cynthia Hansen

Assistant Professor

On Leave Fall 2017

Cynthia Hansen began teaching in the Linguistics Concentration at Grinnell in January 2012.  Her research focuses on the documentation and linguistic description of Iquito, a highly endangered language of the Peruvian Amazon.  She teaches the core courses within the Linguistics Concentration (Introduction to General Linguistics, Syntax, Phonetics and Phonology, and the Seminar in Linguistics) as well as an anthropology course on language contact.

Professor Hansen graduated with a BA in Linguistics from Dartmouth College.  From there, she worked as an Associate Speech Science Engineer at SpeechWorks (now Nuance) in Boston, MA, contributing to their international speech recognition projects.  After three years with that company, she moved to Cuernavaca, Mexico to work with a local NGO.  She returned to the US to pursue graduate study in linguistics at The University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Master’s Degree in 2006 and her PhD in 2011.

Her research on Iquito examines an unusual word order alternation that occurs between the realis and irrealis mood. She is also a contributing member of the Iquito Language Documentation Project and has written about various aspects of Iquito syntax and morphology.

Campus Phone: 

(641) 269-3099

Campus Job(s): 

Assistant Professor of Anthropology; Teaching Linguistics

faculty info column 1

On-Campus Address: 

203 Goodnow Hall
Grinnell, IA 50112
United States

Education / Degrees: 

M.A., 2006, Ph.D., 2011, The University of Texas at Austin B.A., Dartmouth College, 1999

Courses Taught: 

Introduction to General Linguistics; Language Contact; Phonetics and Phonology; Syntax; Seminar in Linguistics: Language Change; Special topic: Choreolinguistics 

Primary Academic Interest: 

endangered language description and documentation (especially within Amazonia)
Iquito and the Zaparoan languages
morphological and syntactic typology (especially word order alternations)
numeral systems

Curriculum Vitae/Resume: