Scholar to discuss new research on early Chinese language

Scholar to discuss new research on early Chinese language

 Dr. William BaxterDr. William Baxter, a historical linguist at the University of Michigan specializing in the history of the Chinese language, will speak on "What was the Early Chinese Language Like?” at 4:30 p.m., Thursday, April 12 in Room 1028 of Brown Hall. The lecture is open to the public free of charge.

Baxter's talk will focus on recent research on the early Chinese language, and on the implications of this research for a deeper understanding of early Chinese culture.  

He is the author of the 1992 book, “A Handbook of Old Chinese Phonology.” His recent publications deal with the history of Chinese and its dialects, linguistic approaches to early Chinese literature, and the methodology of historical linguistics. Baxter is currently completing a book in collaboration with Laurent Sagart of the National Center for Scientific Research in Paris (working title: Old Chinese: A New Reconstruction), to be published by Oxford University Press. The book will present a revised reconstruction of Old Chinese, utilizing newly available evidence from modern Chinese dialects, from languages with very early loanwords from Chinese, and from recently excavated early Chinese documents.

Baxter earned his Ph.D. in Linguistics in 1977 at Cornell University. His lecture is sponsored by WMU's Timothy Light Center for Chinese Studies, Confucius Institute and the Diether H. Haenicke Institute for Global Education.

For more information, contact the center at hige-lightcenter@wmich.edu or (269) 387-5890.

Dr. Gregory Veeck
Professor of Geography
WMU Fulbright Scholar

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