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College of Liberal and Fine Arts

Whitney Chappell, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Spanish Linguistics
Dept of Modern Languages and Literatures

Email: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Phone: 210-458-5223
Office: MH 4.01.10
Office hours: W 12:00-2:00 PM

Research area: Hispanic Linguistics

About
Teaching
Research
Publications
  • Biography

    Research Interests:

    Hispanic linguistics, variation across dialects of Spanish, sociolinguistics, phonetics, glottal stop use in Spanish, hiatus resolution, /s/ phenomena in Spanish, the intonation/pragmatics interface, Spanish in contact with other languages, bilingualism, and second language acquisition.

     

    Dr. Whitney Chappell works in Hispanic Linguistics, specializing in sociophonetic variation across monolingual and bilingual dialects of Spanish and languages in contact with Spanish. Her research sheds light on how different phonetic realizations are used to encode meaning and negotiate identity within a broader social setting, contributing to our understanding of sociolinguistics, phonetics, and dialectology.

    Chappell's research attempts to bridge the gap between phonetics and sociolinguistics by wedding linguistic theory with concrete, contextual realizations. Her work therefore addresses the following broad research questions: (i) Where does the phonetic variation occur and how can it be couched within linguistic theory to account for the phenomenon? (ii) How do phonetic realizations encode social meaning? (iii) What social meaning is encoded and how does it differ across social groups and dialects? The pursuit of these questions expands our current understanding of why variation occurs and how variation and meaning interact to index social affiliation.

    In her dissertation, Chappell focuses on Nicaraguan Spanish speakers' use of the glottal stop, i.e. the glottal closure found in English between the vowels in uh-oh, used in Nicaraguan Spanish between vowels at the word boundary for /s/, e.g. las olas as [laʔ ola]. It is the first study to offer a systematic analysis of the regional realization and explain both its social meaning and phonetic motivation. In addition to the glottal stop, Chappell's published work has explored the production and perception of intervocalic /s/ voicing in Ecuadorian and Costa Rican Spanish, /s/ aspiration in bilingual Miskitu communities, rhotacism of /s/ in Spanish-Catalan contact varieties, and the relationship between pragmatic meaning and intonational contours in Nicaraguan Spanish, among other topics. She is currently investigating heritage Spanish speakers' sociophonetic perception to determine if heritage speakers connect phonetic variants with social meaning in the same way that native Spanish speakers do, which will elucidate the connection between linguistic and social information in the mind based on language experience.

    Degrees

    • Ph.D., The Ohio State University, Columbus (2013)

    • M.A., Northern Illinois University, DeKalb (2009)

    • B.A., The University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (2006)

  • Recent Courses

          

    Graduate and upper-level linguistics classes

    Spanish 4113/5943, Language and Identity, The University of Texas at San Antonio. Spring 2015.

    Spanish 4113, Spanish in Contact with Other Languages, The University of Texas at San Antonio. Fall 2013/2015.

    Spanish 4113/Linguistics 3883, Sociolinguistics, The University of Texas at San Antonio. Spring 2014/2016.

    Spanish 4113/Linguistics 4013, Language and Gender, The University of Texas at San Antonio. Fall 2014.

    Spanish 3113, Linguistic Structures of Spanish, The University of Texas at San Antonio. Spring 2014/2015/2016.

    Spanish 3013, Spanish Phonetics and Pronunciation, The University of Texas at San Antonio. Fall 2013/2014/2015.

    Spanish 401, Advanced Spanish Grammar, The Ohio State University. Winter 2012.

    Lower-level language classes

    Spanish 103, Intermediate Spanish I, The Ohio State University. Spring 2012.
    Spanish 102.66, Intensive Spanish for Review, The Ohio State University. Fall 2011. 

    Composition classes

    English 104, Rhetoric and Composition II, Northern Illinois University.  Two classes, Spring 2009. 

    English 103, Rhetoric and Composition I, Northern Illinois University. Fall 2008. 

    Global studies classes

     LAS 102, Global Studies, University of Illinois. Spring 2006.
     LAS 101, Global Studies, University of Illinois. Fall 2005.

  • Research in Progress

    Chappell, Whitney. Under review. “Actitudes lingüísticas de los misquitos en un entorno multicultural y multilingüe siempre en desarrollo.” Manuscript submitted for publication.

    Chappell, Whitney. Under review. “Rate of speech or attention to speech?: A qualification about coarticulation.” Manuscript submitted for publication.

    Chappell, Whitney. Under review. “The importance of motivated comparisons in variationist studies.” Manuscript submitted for publication.

    Chappell, Whitney. In prep. “Svarabhakti vowel perception among native, heritage, and L2 Spanish speakers.” Manuscript in preparation to be submitted for publication.

    Chappell, Whitney. In prep. “Costa Rican Spanish speakers’ phonetic discrimination of intervocalic [s] and [z].” Manuscript in preparation to be submitted for publication.

    Chappell, Whitney. In prep. "En esta petsa, este anio: The Spanish sound system in contact with Miskitu." Invited chapter for Spanish Phonetics/Phonology in Contact.

    Chappell, Whitney and Christina García. In prep. “Factors conditioning /s/ voicing in Costa Rica Spanish.” Manuscript in preparation to be submitted for publication.

    Chappell, Whitney and Francisco Martínez Ibarra. In prep. “Intervocalic [z] in Valencian Spanish: Contact feature or language-internal change?” Manuscript in preparation to be submitted for publication.

  • Recent Publications

    • Chappell, Whitney. In press. “Bilingualism & aspiration: Coda /s/ reduction on the Atlantic Coast of Nicaragua.” To appear in Spanish Language and Sociolinguistic Analysis. [In the Issues in Hispanic and Lusophone Linguistics series].

    • Chappell, Whitney and Francisco Martínez Ibarra. In press. “Rhotacism of /s/ in Elche Spanish: Social and linguistic factors conditioning the variant.” To appear in Contemporary Studies on Theoretical and Applied Linguistics of Spanish Variation. [In the Theoretical Developments in Hispanic Linguistics series].

    • Chappell, Whitney. In press. “On the social perception of intervocalic /s/ voicing in Costa Rican Spanish.” To appear in Language Variation and Change.

    • Chappell, Whitney. In press. “On Spanglish: Denominator of Linguistic Hybridity or Sociocultural Identity?” To appear in Hispania.

    • Chappell, Whitney. 2015. “Linguistic factors conditioning glottal constriction in Nicaraguan Spanish.” Italian Journal of Linguistics/Rivista di Linguistica 27(2): 1-42

    • Chappell, Whitney. 2015. “Formality strategies in Managua, Nicaragua: A local vs. global approach.” Spanish in Context. 12(2): 221-254.

    • Chappell, Whitney. 2014. “Reanalyses and hypercorrection among extreme /s/-reducers.” University of Pennsylvania Working Papers in Linguistics: Vol. 20: Iss. 2, Article 5. Available at: http://repository.upenn.edu/pwpl/vol20/iss2/5

    • Chappell, Whitney. 2013. “Intonational Contours of Nicaraguan Granadino Spanish in Absolute Questions and Their Relationship with Pragmatic Meaning.” In Selected Proceedings of the 15th Hispanic Linguistics Symposium, ed. Chad Howe et al., 119-139. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Proceedings Project. http://www.lingref.com, document #2880.

    • Chappell, Whitney. 2011. “The Intervocalic Voicing of /s/ in Ecuadorian Spanish.” In Selected Proceedings of the 5th Workshop on Spanish Sociolinguistics, ed. Jim Michnowicz and Robin Dodsworth, 57-64. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Proceedings Project. http://www.lingref.com, document #250.

    • Chappell, Whitney. Accepted for publication. [Financial issues have delayed publication]. “Los bajamientos vocálicos en el quechua ancashino: Un análisis fonético y fonológico.” Por los senderos de las lenguas en Ancash: Pasado, presente y futuro del Quechua. Lima-Huaraz: CILA-UNMSM and UNASAM.