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Keynote lecture: La investigación de las lenguas Mixezoqueanas

On November 12, 2017, in Uncategorized, by Gabriela Garcia Salido

The Center for Anthropological Studies at UNAM cordially invite you to the Keynote lecture: “La investigación de las lenguas mixezoqueanas: ¿en dónde estamos? ¿qué sabemos?” by Dr. Roberto Zavala (CIESAS-Sureste) in the conference room Pablo González Casanova (FCPyS).



Interdisciplinary Seminar on Anthropology

On March 17, 2017, in Uncategorized, by Gabriela Garcia Salido

This March 29th we will have Leopoldo Valiñas Coalla (Institute of Anthropological Research, UNAM) with his talk: “Genetic trees and the history of the groups: the case of the southern yutoazteca”, at the Interdisciplinary Seminar on Anthropology (CEA-FCPyS ).

Time: 12:00 pm – 2:00 p.m.

Place: CEA boardroom. Building E, third floor (309)


All are cordially invited to the workshop: “Methods and Techniques for Language Documentation” from March 21 to 24, given by Dr. Justin McIntosh at FCPyS-UNAM


Interdisciplinary Seminar on Anthropology

On September 17, 2016, in Uncategorized, by Gabriela Garcia Salido


This August 24th we will have Antonio Reyes Valdez (INAH, Durango) with his talk: “Los tepehuanos del noroeste mexicano. Una aproximación interdisciplinaria a la etnicdad”, at the Interdisciplinary Seminar on Anthropology (CEA-FCPyS ).



The project will make an important contribution to ongoing efforts in the field of documenting endangered languages by providing the first high quality corpus of original language documentation materials with the use of digital audio and video media resources.

More specifically, this project will put together a large body of data and detailed descriptions, bringing together interrelated phenomena through the analyses of this language and through the comparison of this language with the rest of the Uto-Aztecan languages. The data will illuminate some of the most complicated areas of Southwestern Tepehuan grammar such as the use of finite clauses instead of nominalization, an uncommon word order for a Uto-Aztecan language (VOS), among other features.

The project outcomes will not only be of interest to the field of linguistics, but also to the fields of anthropology, archaeology, history, sociolinguistics and related fields by providing oral histories and local knowledge of the Tepehuan people. This together with a deeper understanding of the language can be used to evaluate models of migration and population of northern Mexico. The detailed documentation, description and analysis of this understudied Uto-Aztecan language are fundamental to the reconstruction of proto-history and for the understanding of other Uto-Aztecan languages and non Uto-Aztecan languages. Additionally, since Tepehuan is located at a crossroads of Mesoamerica and the Southwest, this project also provides relevant information about the understanding of Mesoamerican- Southwest interactions.

Furthermore, the data will also be useful to study some social issues past and present such as language change, differences due to gender, speech style, and prestige in the community as well as degree of contact with Spanish. Since there is no study of this kind on South Tepehuan dialectology, the data will help to account for historical changes of the language and will be relevant for comparative studies.


Gabriela García’s 2014 Dissertation is a Prize Winner

On December 4, 2015, in Uncategorized, by Gabriela Garcia Salido

Gabriela García Salido (Ph.D. 2014) has won the 2015 Wigberto Jiménez Moreno prize from Mexico’s Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia (INAH) for the best doctoral dissertation in linguistics of the year. The title of her dissertation is “Clause Linkage in Southeastern Tepehuan, a Uto-Aztecan Language of Northern Mexico.” Dr. García’s dissertation advisor was Professor Nora England.


This project supported by the Mexican Academy of Sciences (AMC, CONACyT, and CCC) has two main goals: a) to extend the recent efforts of language documentation on Southeastern Tepehuan (O’dam), and b) to expand the current database with discourse genres that were not captured or were scarce in the first stage of documentation (2010-211). By providing local records on the real situation of the language, we will benefit both the grammatical study of the language, and the possible comparisons with other Uto-Aztecan languages or neighboring languages.


On March 6 2014, I defended my dissertation: Clause Linkage in Southeastern Tepehuan, a Uto-Aztecan Language of Northern Mexico at The University of Texas at Austin.

This dissertation examines the complexity of complementation in O’dam, also known as Southeastern Tepehuan (SET), based on a corpus of twenty-seven hours of naturally recorded speech (105 texts). This complexity is due in part to the fact that the same subordinate marker, na, encodes complements, adverbial and relative clauses, and, in some instances, non-embedded clauses. That is, distributional patterns indicate that na is a polyfunctional marker in SET. In addition to using the na marker, SET conveys adverbial and complement clauses through using non-embedded clauses (i.e., juxtaposition), supporting the notion that subordination does not always involve an embedded association (Cristofaro 2003). Crucially, juxtaposition is also used as a coordination strategy. Therefore, investigating clause linkage in SET highlights the formal and semantic categories in which SET differentiates embedded clauses. It further suggests that SET has a continuum of features that distinguish these dependent relationships (e.g., aspect, second position clitics, inherent control, an overt subordinate marker, negation, and focus); thus, this research contributes to recent work on the typology of complementation. All embedded clauses in SET can be distinguished by means of a second position clitic and by the morphology attached to the embedded predicate or to the subordinate marker. More specifically, complements and relative clauses require second position clitics, but adverbials only use them if they are marking switch-reference. This behavior is unique, because adverbials use second position clitics as an indicator of thematic continuity for subjects, suggesting that the development of these clitics evolved independently with the function of marking switch reference. Also, ‘when’ clauses do not have a fixed order compared to locative and manner adverbial clauses, because locative and manner adverbial clauses, along with complements and relatives, always follow the main clause. As for the morphology encoded in complement clauses, SET distinguishes between embedded clauses with or without a complementizer, and on the basis of internal aspectual morphology and inherent control. As a result, it is not the form, but the interface of morphosyntactic, semantic and pragmatic information that helps us identify the type of embedded clause we are facing.

Dissertation Committee: Nora C. England, (supervisor), Patience L. EppsStephen Wechsler, John Beavers, Roberto Zavala Maldonado, and Zarina Estrada Fernández.


The main goal of this project, to begin in August 2013, is to compare Mason’s documentation of Tepecano (1911-1912), and Southern Tepehuan (1948), dating from the 20th century, with my own research on Southeastern Tepehuan (SET), a more recent contribution to the field of endangered language documentation (2010-2011). During my staying at the American Philosophical Society Library, I will use the Mason collection there to analyze the similarities and differences found for the Tepehuan language over a period of sixty-three years.