LINGUIST List 22.5101|
Sat Dec 17 2011
Support: Sociolinguistics: PhD Student, Queen Mary, University of London
Editor for this issue: Matthew Lahrman
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1. Devyani Sharma ,
Sociolinguistics: PhD Student, Queen Mary, University of London
Message 1: Sociolinguistics: PhD Student, Queen Mary, University of London
From: Devyani Sharma <d.sharmaqmul.ac.uk>
Subject: Sociolinguistics: PhD Student, Queen Mary, University of London
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Web Address: http://www.sllf.qmul.ac.uk/linguistics/
Duties: Project Work
Specialty Areas: Sociolinguistics
The aim of this project is to map changing psychological processes and language
features of multiple generations of British Bangladeshis in East London, along with
White British Londoners, to determine the causal factors that drive
intergenerational psychological and linguistic change. The psychological
component of the project builds on recent work in cultural psychology
demonstrating significant variation in the psychological processes of Western (e.g.
British) and non-Western (e.g. Asian) people (Heine & Norenzayan 2006), with
Westerners showing more analytic cognition and independent social orientation
than non-Westerners' holistic cognition and interdependence. Yet it is unknown
how these psychological differences are maintained over time. By studying how
and why non-Western immigrants to a Western country shift from non-Western to
Western psychological processes, we can begin to address this question. The
student will administer various cognitive tests to multiple generations of British
Bangladeshis and their White British counterparts, building on pilot work conducted
by Dr Mesoudi (see Mesoudi et al. in prep). The sociolinguistic component of the
project builds on Dr Sharma's recent work with Punjabi-speaking British Indians in
West London (Sharma, 2011; Sharma & Sankaran, in press), which has revealed
gradual inter-generational dialect change that is driven by broader changes in
demographics and race relations. The student will conduct a similar investigation
of language use among Bengali-speaking British Bangladeshis in East London to
ascertain whether language and dialect shift in this community is gradual or abrupt.
The student will integrate these psychological and sociolinguistic findings and
theories, to explore the interactions between cognition and language.
The student will receive training in the methods of both cultural psychology and
sociolinguistics from Dr Mesoudi and Dr Sharma respectively, and will take
courses run by London Social Science (the Queen Mary/Goldsmiths ESRC
Doctoral Training Centre), including key quantitative (e.g. statistical analysis) and
qualitative (e.g. interview techniques) training. Both the Biological and
Experimental Psychology Group and the Department of Linguistics provide
postgraduate students with a vibrant and stimulating academic environment
including regular reading groups and seminars.
Applications are invited from candidates with, or expecting to obtain, at least an
upper-second class honours degree (or equivalent non-UK degree) in an area
relevant to the project (e.g. psychology, linguistics). Candidates with suitable
Masters-level training are particularly welcome to apply, as are international (non-
EU) students. Please direct informal enquiries to either Dr Alex Mesoudi
(a.mesoudiqmul.ac.uk) or Dr Devyani Sharma (d.sharmaqmul.ac.uk).
Applications Deadline: 31-Jan-2012
Web Address for Applications: http://www.qmul.ac.uk/courses/courses.php?course_id=551&dept_id=25&pgc
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