Martine Robbeets Where Did the Japanese Language and Its Speakers Come From?

Martine Robbeets is Research Group Leader at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History and Lecturer at the University of Mainz. Previous affiliations include that of Associate Professor of Japanese Linguistics at Leiden University and Visiting Professor at the University of Leuven. Her research interests include comparative and historical linguistics and linguistic evolution. Her languages of interest are, among others, Turkic, Mongolic and Tungusic languages, Japanese and Korean. She is review editor of Studies in Language and member of the editorial board of Folia Linguistica, the Journal of Philology: Ural-Altaic Studies and Linguistica Brunensia.

Area of Research

Linguistics

since 2015

Research Group Leader

Max Planck Society (more details)

Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History

since 2015

Lecturer

Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz (Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz)

2014-2015

Associate Professor in Japanese Linguistics

University of Leiden

2010-2014

DFG Research Project Leader

Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz (Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz)

2009-2011

Visiting Professor

Catholic University of Leuven

2007-2008

Interim Professor of General Linguistics

Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz (Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz)

since 2006

Postdoctoral Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellow / Lecturer

Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz (Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz)

2004-2005

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

University of Tokyo

1998-2003

Teaching and Research Assistant

University of Leiden

2015

Habilitation

Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz (Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz)

Department of Linguistics

2003

PhD

University of Leiden

Department of Comparative Linguistics

1998

Master degree

University of Leiden

Department of Korean Studies

1996

Master degree

Catholic University of Leuven

Department of Japanese Studies

- European Research Council Consolidator Grant "Millet and beans, language and genes. The origin and dispersal of the Transeurasian languages" (2015-2020)

- German Research Foundation (DFG) "Die transeurasiatischen Sprachen: Kontakt in der Familie" (2010-2014)

- Return Mandate from the Belgian Federal Research Agency "Grammaticalization in Japanese and the Transeurasian languages" (2009-2011)

- Alexander von Humboldt Foundation "Verb morphology in Japanese and Altaic" (2006-2008)

- Japan Foundation "Phonology and the historical comparison of Japanese" (2005-2006)

- Canon Europe Foundation "Japanese basic vocabulary in a comparative context" (2004-2005)

© Maximilian Dörrbecker

Max Planck Society


"The Max Planck Society is Germany's most successful research organization. Since its establishment in 1948, no fewer than 18 Nobel laureates have emerged from the ranks of its scientists, putting it on a par with the best and most prestigious research institutions worldwide. The more than 15,000 publications each year in internationally renowned scientific journals are proof of the outstanding research work conducted at Max Planck Institutes – and many of those articles are among the most-cited publications in the relevant field." (Source)

Institute

Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History

The Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History conducts basic research using modern analytical methods with the aim of a multidisciplinary and integrated science of human history. It seeks to bridge the gap between historical disciplines and the natural sciences. Scientists from a range of fields, such as biology, linguistics, archaeology, anthropology and history jointly work on innovative methods, in particular in the fields of cutting-edge genetic and proteomic sequencing, bioinformatics, archaeological science, computational modeling, language databases, and phylogeography. This thoroughly integrated, interdisciplinary approach will address long-standing questions about human history – including some previously deemed difficult, or even completely intractable – as well as novel questions inspired by the new horizons that cutting edge methods open up. (Source)

Map

One of the most disputed issues in historical-comparative linguistics is the origin of the Japanese language and the question of whether it is related to the Transeurasian languages. MARTINE ROBBEETS has already shown in past research that it is possible to find a small core of evidence that relates Japanese as a daughter language of Transeurasian. This, she explains in this video, leads to new questions: How and why did the language family spread? And how did Japanese reach its present-day location? In order to find answers, Robbeets and her research team combined linguistic inferences from the reconstruction of proto-Transeurasian with findings from archeology and genetics. This process allowed them to locate and date the ancestor of Japanese and also to trace the path the language took before reaching the Japanese Islands.

LT Video Publication DOI: https://doi.org/10.21036/LTPUB10555

Language Farming Dispersal: Food for Thought

  • Martine Robbeets
  • Language Dispersal Beyond Farming
  • Published in 2017
Martine Robbeets. "Language Farming Dispersal: Food for Thought." In Language Dispersal Beyond Farming, edited by Martine Robbeets and Alexander Savelyev. Amsterdam: Benjamins, 2017: 1-23.

The Language of the Transeurasian Farmers

  • Martine Robbeets
  • Language Dispersal Beyond Farming
  • Published in 2017
Martine Robbeets. "The Language of the Transeurasian Farmers." In Language Dispersal Beyond Farming, edited by Martine Robbeets and Alexander Savelyev. Amsterdam: Benjamins, 2017: 96-116.

Austronesian Influence and Transeurasian Ancestry in Japanese: A Case of Farming/Language Dispersal

  • Martine Robbeets
  • Language Dynamics and Change
  • Published in 2017
Martine Robbeets. "Austronesian Influence and Transeurasian Ancestry in Japanese: A Case of Farming/Language Dispersal." Language Dynamics and Change 7, 2 (2017): 1-42.