My dissertation fieldwork and write up is being supported by the Fulbright U. In addition to my dissertation research, since I have been conducting variationist sociolinguistic analyses of contact between different varieties of Palestinian Arabic. This work stems from fieldwork conducted in the Gaza Strip, as well as more recent fieldwork conducted with Palestinian refugees in Northern Jordan.
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This work has examined sociolinguistic change in the realization of the Arabic voiceless uvular stop [q], as well as the feminine gender marking morpheme. In addition to its sociolinguistic focus, this fieldwork has also contributed to my ongoing attempt to provide an up to date description of Gaza City Arabic, an understudied Arabic variety whose most reliable documentation took place in Beyond my interests in how speakers use Arabic in their day to day lives, I have also investigated the ways in which state apparatuses utilize Arabic in conflict areas.
Within this body of work, I have been particularly interested in how state militaries deploy Arabic in leaflets, phone calls, and SMS message as one of component of conducting military conflict.
In doing so, this work examines how state uses of language play a role in creating social and political imaginaries of what the state is and does , the relationship between the state and its literal or figurative margins, and the practical role that language plays in shifting responsibility in conflict zones. The outcomes of this work have been published in Sapiens and the Journal of Linguistic Anthropology.
Finally, as a result of my previous experience working in the specialty coffee industry I have conducted work exploring the sensory discourse of coffee in the United States. This interest has resulted in two primary areas of research. The first, conducted with my colleague Mary-Caitlyn Valentinsson , investigates the relationship between the language of specialty coffee tasting events, public facing media discourses within specialty coffee, and issues of social class in North America. In this work, we examine how consumer uptake of and interaction with these different forms of language speak to broader class-based anxieties and their connection to consumption practices.
Second, beyond consumer interaction with specialty coffee discourses, I have conducted additional work that investigates the narratives of professional barista competitions.
This project investigates how voicing is used as a discursive tool by baristas in competition narratives, and its role in validating the authenticity and legitimacy of the product that they serve and their professional identities in a rapidly evolving craft industry. The study emerging from the first strand of this work has been published in the Journal of Sociolinguistics , with an additional accepted pending revisions to Signs and Society.
Where available, titles are linked to final published versions.
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Pre-publication versions are also linked where available. Voicing the supply chain: Moral economies and enduring inequality in the world of professional barista competitions. Signs and Society Cotter, William M. The Arabic dialect of Gaza City. Journal of the International Phonetic Association.
Cotter, William M. Bivalent class indexing in the sociolinguistics of specialty coffee talk. Journal of Sociolinguistics 22 5 : Not-so-strange bedfellows: Documentation, description, and sociolinguistics in Gaza. Canadian Journal of Linguistics 62 4 : Gaza at the margins?
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Legibility and indeterminacy in the Israel-Palestine conflict. Journal of Linguistic Anthropology 27 1 : PDF Horesh, Uri. Current research on linguistic variation in the Arabic speaking world. Language and Linguistics Compass 10 8 : Journal of Arabic and Islamic Studies Social integration and dialect divergence in coastal Palestine. Journal of Sociolinguistics , 19 4 : Northern Arizona Vowels. Publication of the American Dialect Society. In Haddad, Youssef and Eric Potsdam eds.
Amsterdam: John Benjamins. Burying Tariq Aziz. Arizona Anthropologist On depression, anxiety, and looking for the silver lining in short term fieldwork. Dialect Contact and Phonological Change. In Lucas, Chris and Stefano Manfredi eds. Arabic and contact-induced change: A handbook. Berlin: Language Science Press. Regional Variation. William M. Cotter E-mail address: williamcotter email.
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