Teresa Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies
Teresa Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies

Sandro Sessarego


Associate ProfessorPh.D., The Ohio State University

Assistant Professor, Department of Spanish & Portuguese
Sandro Sessarego

Contact

Interests


Contact linguistics; sociolinguistics; Afro-Hispanic languages of the Americas

Biography


I am an Associate Professor in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Texas at Austin,  a former Marie Curie Junior Fellow at the Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies,  a HCAS Core Fellow at the Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies, a member of the Foro Latinoamericano de Antropología del Derecho and a member of the Rapoport Center for Human Rights and Justice.  I work primarily in the fields of contact linguistics, sociolinguistics, syntax and human rights. The linguistic study of the Afro-Latino Vernaculars of the Americas (ALVAs) —the languages that developed in Latin America from the contact of African languages, Spanish and Portuguese in colonial times— and the sociohistorical analysis of their evolution form the main themes of my research program. In particular, my investigation combines linguistic, sociohistorical, legal and anthropological insights to cast light on the nature and origins of these contact varieties.

 

 

Courses


SPN 356 • Placeholder For Spn 377c

43186 • Fall 2020
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM BEN 1.124
EGC

Examines how indigenous writers, artists, and cultural producers have established their own voices and languages through writing and other forms of media. Analysis of the indigenous artistic and intellectual production in concrete political and cultural contexts.

Topic 1: Indigenous Voices in Latin American Literature.

Topic 2: The Imagined Andes.

Topic 3: Contemporary Mesoamerican Indigenous Literatures. Examines the early Mesoamerican mythological narrative, Popol Wuj, as well as twentieth-century Central American texts. Explores ethnicity, class, gender, and traditional cultures as main factors in regional negotiations of identity constructions.

 

SPN 330L • Intro Lang And Ling In Society

44720 • Spring 2020
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM MEZ 1.212
GC

Examines the dynamics of language structure and use throughout the Spanish-speaking world, and covers topics such as sound systems, grammatical structures, historical developments, language learning and loss, and dialect differences and their social significance.

SPN 353 • Sociolinguistics

44735 • Spring 2020
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM JES A217A
CDGCII

SPN 353 SOCIOLINGUISTICS

This course provides an introduction to sociolinguistic analysis. Sociolinguistics focuses on the symbolic value of language as an expression of group identity based on region, gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic class, age, or other ways of defining group affiliation. We will explore linguistic concepts such as speech community, sociolinguistic variable, phonological and morpho-syntactic variation. The course also surveys a variety of topics related to language in contact, bilingualism, Spanish as a heritage language, etc.  We will focus on research examining the use of Spanish in Latin America and Spain as well as in the U.S.

ILA 381 • Intro Theory & Rsrch Of Ling

43830 • Fall 2019
Meets T 5:00PM-8:00PM BEN 1.106

Course Description:

This course is a graduate level introduction to Theory and Research of Linguistics, with a particular focus on Contact Linguistics. We will read, discuss, and analyze the social and linguistic factors that regulate contact induced change. We will cover a wide range of language contact phenomena from both linguistic and social perspectives. This will allow us to understand how different social and linguistic factors may shape the outcome of a variety of contact situations. After having provided a theoretical foundation, we will analyze current issues concerning Spanish in contact with other languages. Active participation in class discussion is both expected and encouraged.

SPN 346 • Sounds And Intonation

44490 • Fall 2019
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM MEZ 1.102

Introduction to the study of Spanish phonetics and phonology, focusing on four aspects: mechanisms of sound production, representation of sounds and intonation, dialect variation, and comparison with English.

SPN 330L • Intro Lang And Ling In Society

45240 • Spring 2019
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM BEN 1.122
GC

This course is a graduate level introduction to Theory and Research of Linguistics, with a particular focus on quantitative sociolinguistics. The course will focus on some of the major findings this type of research has yielded. The emphasis of this course will be placed on the analysis of linguistic variation at both the phonological and the morphosyntactic levels. The class will be very hands-on, including training on software programs. Readings, exercises, and discussions will center on methods of data collection, variable rule analysis, and the interpretation of data.

SPN 346 • Sounds And Intonation

45255 • Spring 2019
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM PAR 304

This course offers a comprehensive review of Spanish pronunciation. The fundamental principles of phonetic analysis are introduced in a simple and concise manner in order to show how Spanish sounds are produced, how they fall into patterns, and how they change in different environments. Major attention is devoted to practice with corrective exercises. Throughout this course we will focus on the contrast between Spanish and English sound patterns, an aspect intended to help students understand the major phonetic differences between both languages and at the same time improve individual Spanish pronunciation.   

ILA 381 • Intro Theory & Rsrch Of Ling

45130 • Fall 2018
Meets W 5:00PM-8:00PM BEN 1.118

DESCRIPTION:

This course is a graduate level introduction to Theory and Research of Linguistics, with a particular focus on quantitative sociolinguistics. The course will focus on some of the major findings this type of research has yielded. The emphasis of this course will be placed on the analysis of linguistic variation at both the phonological and the morphosyntactic levels. The class will be very hands-on, including training on software programs. Readings, exercises, and discussions will center on methods of data collection, variable rule analysis, and the interpretation of data.

 

ILA 386 • Variatnist Sociolinguistics

44870 • Spring 2016
Meets TH 5:00PM-8:00PM BEN 1.118

Course DescriptionThis course is a graduate level introduction to the central concerns of Hispanic quantitative sociolinguistics. The course will focus on some of the major findings this type of research has yielded. The emphasis of this course will be placed on the analysis of linguistic variation, in particular at the morphosyntactic level. The class will be very hands-on, including training on software programs. Readings, exercises, and discussions will center on methods of data collection, variable rule analysis, and the interpretation of data.

Goals:

Learn about quantitative sociolinguistics

Become familiar with theories of linguistic variation

Learn how to use Varbrul

Required Materials:      

Blas Arroyo, J. L. (2005). Sociolingüística del español. Desarrollos y perspectivas en el estudio de la lengua en contexto social. Madrid: Cátedra.

Tagliamonte, S. A. (2006).Analyzing Sociolinguistic Variation. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Goldvarb X: http://individual.utoronto.ca/tagliamonte/goldvarb.htmt

Additional Materials:   

Chambers, J.K. (2003). Sociolinguistic theory. Oxford: Blackwell.

Hudson R. A. (2001). Sociolinguistics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Meyerhoff, M. (2011). Introducing sociolinguistics. London: Routledge. 

Milroy, L. & M. Gordon. (2003). Sociolinguistics: methods and interpretation.  Oxford: Blackwell.

Silva-Corvalán, C. (2001). Sociolingüística y pragmática del español. Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press.

Tagliamonte, S. (2011). Variationist sociolinguistics: Change, observation, interpretation. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.

Attendance Policy:

Regular attendance is required. Only in the case of documented absences(s) will late work be accepted.  Missing classes without a justification will affect the final grade.

Requirements:

Paper presentation (with handout)                                                                      10%

  • The presentation should include an article’s summary and a brief reflection on its content (article’s strengths & weaknesses; questions for class discussion).  

Mini-fieldwork projects (2)                                                                                  25%

Homework assignments                                                                                      25%

Variation Analysis Project                                                                                    40%

  • Conference-style abstract of the final paper (one page of text, single-spaced, 12 point font; additional page allowed for references/data).
  • Presentation of final paper (in English or Spanish with handout) in mini-conference to be held at the end of course (20 minutes plus 5 minutes for questions).
  • Final paper (min. 12 pages, double-spaced, 12 point font, 1 inch margins).

Grading Scale

Points          Grade

93-100            A

90-92              A-

87-89              B+

83-86              B

80-82              B-

77-79              C+

73-76              C

70-72              C-

67-69              D+

63-66              D

60-62              D-

Less than 60    F

Canvas

Materials for this course will be regularly posted on Canvas, the UT online course management system. 

SPN 346 • Sounds And Intonation

45620 • Spring 2016
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM BEN 1.122

Introduction to the study of Spanish phonetics and phonology, focusing on four aspects: mechanisms of sound production, representation of sounds and intonation, dialect variation, and comparison with English.

ILA 386 • Spanish In Contact In Lat Amer

45355 • Spring 2015
Meets TH 12:30PM-3:30PM BEN 1.118

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course is a graduate-level seminar on Contact Linguistics. We will read, discuss, and analyze the social and linguistic factors that regulate contact-induced change. We will cover a wide range of language contact phenomena from both linguistic and social perspectives. This will allow us to understand how different social and linguistic factors may shape the outcome of a variety of contact situations.

In general, we may distinguish three main contact scenarios: 1) cases of language maintenance –involving different levels of bilingualism-; 2) cases of language shift –when one community abandons its own language to adopt the language of a different group; 3) cases in which new languages are created (pidgins, creoles, mixed languages, etc.). Nevertheless, there is a variety of cases which cannot fit so clearly into any of these categories, since they involve the interplay of maintenance, shift and creation phenomena.

After having provided a theoretical foundation, we will analyze current issues concerning Spanish in contact with other languages. In particular, we will focus on the Afro-Hispanic varieties that emerged in the Americas. We will discuss and analyze the main hypotheses and debates concerning their genesis and evolution. Active participation in class discussion is both expected and encouraged.

SPN 346 • Sounds And Intonation

46130 • Spring 2015
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM MEZ 1.122

Introduction to the study of Spanish phonetics and phonology, focusing on four aspects: mechanisms of sound production, representation of sounds and intonation, dialect variation, and comparison with English.

SPN 330L • Intro Lang And Ling In Society

47315 • Fall 2014
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM PAR 105
GC

Examines the dynamics of language structure and use throughout the Spanish-speaking world, and covers topics such as sound systems, grammatical structures, historical developments, language learning and loss, and dialect differences and their social significance.

SPN 353 • Sociolinguistics

47330 • Fall 2014
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM MEZ 1.202
CDGCII

Explores the interrelationship of language and society, with reference to the Spanish-speaking world. Studies how socioeconomic, political, and anthropological factors like race, social class, gender, age, and identity influence linguistics forms.


  • Teresa Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies

    University of Texas at Austin
    SRH 1.310
    2300 Red River Street D0800
    Austin, Texas 78712