I am currently working on several projects, including:

The Social Meaning of Semasiological Variation

This research project will culminate in my second qualifying paper for my doctoral degree. I am unifying literature that approaches different meanings of the same word (polysemy, or semasiological variation) from cognitive linguistic, sociolinguistic, and linguistic anthropological perspectives. To do so, I am evaluating previous approaches to semasiological variation and developing a new synergistic framework that takes into account both cognitive and social motivations for semantic extension as well as integrating this type of variation with the notion of social meaning. This project has resulted in one conference presentation.

Polysemy, Metaphor, and Lexeme Integration in the Location-Subject Construction

In this project with Katie Conger, we are working with corpus data from enTenTen15 in Sketch Engine as well as the Corpus of Contemporary American English to study several research questions surrounding the “Location-Subject” Construction, an understudied argument structure construction. We are currently analyzing its semantic frame(s), polysemy, integration with different verb classes, use in figurative language, and aspectual sensitivity. This project has resulted in one conference presentation.

Semantic Variation of racist on Twitter

Using cognitive sociolinguistic corpus methods, I analyze variation in the use of the word racist by tweeters with “blacklivesmatter” vs “maga” in their user descriptions. The corpus for this project consists of tweets with the search term racist from December 2018 – Feb 2019, scraped using twarc. In a series of corpus studies, I have examined the degree to which these two groups of tweeters use different grammatical constructions with racist, and what these syntactic differences demonstrate about how tweeters conceptualize the concept of racism differently. This project also draws on linguistic anthropological theories about different ideologies of racism, showing how ideology is apparent in the syntax-semantics interface. This project has resulted in four conference presentations.