Tucker Childs, Applied Linguistics, was awarded the Kenneth L. Hale Award by the Linguistic Society of America
Author: Currently
Posted: November 13, 2017

Tucker Childs, Applied Linguistics faculty, was awarded the Kenneth L. Hale Award by the Linguistic Society of America (LSA), the national society of American linguists. He will be formally presented with the award at the annual meeting of the LSA in Salt Lake City on Jan. 6, just after he returns from a field trip to his research site in Sierra Leone, where he will distribute products from his documentation efforts on Sherbro. Sherbro is the last undocumented language of the Bolom sub-group of Mel, a family belonging to Niger-Congo, the largest phylum in the world, which covers most of Sub-Saharan Africa. Speakers of the five Bolom languages he has documented are rapidly shifting to more widely spoken African languages; two of the Bolom languages are virtually dead, and a third is nearly dead. Language documentation consists of the production of grammars, dictionaries, and texts, as well as scholarly materials. Childs has also produced videos and audio recordings, which can be sampled at his various websites. The materials are archived at Portland State University, the University of London, and local universities in the host countries of Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea. His work has been supported by major grants from the National Science Foundation and the Arcadia Foundation at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.