University of Massachusetts, Amherst
She is an Assistant Professor at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Her research focuses on how meanings are assembled and how pragmatic inferences are made. María’s research often cuts across traditional categories, bringing together syntax, semantics, pragmatics, discourse theory, prosody, and psycholinguistics. She focuses on constructions in which there is an apparent mismatch between structure and meaning, with the belief that such constructions can give us a special insight into the richness and complexity of the mechanisms that generate meaning in language.
The challenge of documenting the influence of Kichwa in Spanish
This paper addresses the difficulties encountered when trying to obtain documentation on linguistic phenomena related to the structure of information. In particular, we will refer to field research to collect data that informs us about the contribution of the particle ka in the Ecuadorian Andean Castilian and how it differs from its function in Kichwa. We will mainly deal with the weight of the ideology of standard Spanish and its erosive function on the features of this Andean variety. We will focus on how these ideologies affect linguistic fieldwork and expose the techniques we put into operation to overcome these difficulties. Finally, we will briefly summarize the results of the research. We will see that the particle ka in Ecuadorian Andean Castilian goes along with information that is not the main objective of the utterance, while in Castilian, a language that does not mark the structure of the information with morphemes, it becomes a mere marker of contrast.