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Luciana Raccanello Storto

Published onApr 19, 2019
Luciana Raccanello Storto

Since 1993, when I took my first class in generative linguistics during my MA at Penn State I have been in love with the idea of linguistic universals as proposed by Noam Chomsky. I was already working on the description of Karitiana, a native language of Brazil and it was incredible to me that this Amazonian language could have the same verb movement to a second position described for V2 Germanic languages. This is why I decided to go to MIT for my PhD with Ken Hale. It was a great privilege to have been there for four years, and to get in touch with the research of so many great linguists from all around the world who went to MIT because of Noam. It was also a great privilege to have met him in person, both as a professor and to discuss linguistics and politics in Brazil. Since 2003 I teach linguistics at The University of São Paulo and advise students on the description and formal analysis of indigenous languages of Brazil. Noam’s lucid and original ideas in linguistics and politics continue to be as sound as ever for me today when Brazilian democracy and indigenous peoples are threatened by a right-wing government. Thanks, Noam, for bringing light into the worlds of linguistics and politics!

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