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Barbara Kryk-KastovskyDieter Kastovsky
Barbara Kryk-Kastovsky (left) and Dieter Kastovsky

UTSA to host lectures by two linguistics experts

By Alexandria Sanchez
Student Writer, College of Liberal and Fine Arts

(March 21, 2007)--The UTSA Department of English, Classics and Philosophy will host a March 23 lecture by Barbara Kryk-Kastovsky, professor of English at Adam Mickiewicz University in Posnan, Poland, and a March 26 lecture by her husband, Dieter Kastovsky, professor of English linguistics at the University of Vienna (Austria). The lectures are free and open to the public.

Kryk-Kastovsky is an expert in text linguistics, discourse analysis and intercultural communication. She will speak on "Can Words Behead? Perlocutions in Early Modern English Court Trial Records" at noon, Friday, March 23 in the University Center Mesquite Room (2.01.24), 1604 Campus.

Kastovsky is a specialist in English morphology (word-forming elements and processes) from historical and contemporary views. He will speak on "The 'Invisible Hand,' Drifts and Typological Shifts: Examples from English" at 4 p.m., Monday, March 26 in the University Center Willow Room 2.02.12, 1604 Campus.

Barbara Kryk-Kastovky is the author and editor of a number of articles and books on topics such as the linguistic, cognitive and cultural variables of the conceptualization of space, gender in Polish, diminutives and representations of orality (personality traits of language) in early Modern English trial records. In her lecture, she will analyze courtroom discourse in early trial records and the role of legal discourse in incriminating those on trial.

Dieter Kastovsky has authored and edited many books and articles on the restructuring of verbs in Old and Middle English, the dissolution of Old English grammatical gender and the relationship of diachrony (influence of culture on language), dialect and typology. His lecture will focus on how the invisible-hand theory and Edward Sapir's theory of linguistic drift inform recent studies on linguistic typology and historical linguistics.

According to +Plus magazine, invisible-hand explanations are often used today to explain many types of phenomena from scientific progress to environmental degradation. The "invisible hand" is seen as the mechanism by which a benevolent God administers a universe in which human happiness is of the highest importance.

According to Answers.com, Edward Sapir is an American linguist and anthropologist noted for his studies of Native American languages and his theories on how language shapes our perceptions.

For more information contact Bridget Drinka, associate professor of English, classics and philosophy, at (210) 458-7720.

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