Stephen Pax Leonard

Stephen Pax Leonard
Moscow State Linguistic University

Doctor of Philosophy University of Oxford

About

30
Publications
4,718
Reads
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58
Citations
Introduction
Stephen Pax Leonard is an Oxford trained linguistic anthropologist. He holds a professorship at Moscow State Linguistic University. He was elected to a Fellowship at Trinity Hall, Cambridge in 2009 and a Fellowship at Exeter College, Oxford in 2014. https://stephenpaxleonard.com/ https://www.amazon.com/Stephen-Pax-Leonard/e/B019FKSSDG%3Fref=dbs_a_mng_rwt_scns_share https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2166-540X https://www.semanticscholar.org/author/Stephen-Pax-Leonard/104856594
Additional affiliations
September 2020 - present
Moscow State Linguistic University
Position
  • Professor
October 2018 - September 2020
I.M. Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
September 2014 - September 2018
University of Oxford
Position
  • Research Associate
Description
  • Leonard is an ethnographer and linguist who has worked in Colombia and the Scandinavian Arctic region. His recent research funded by the British Academy has been on the anthropology of radio and kidnapping in Colombia.
Education
June 2004 - August 2009
University of Oxford
Field of study
  • Linguistics

Publications

Publications (30)
Article
Full-text available
Comedy has long been analysed from a pragmatic perspective with the predictable conclusion that we laugh because one of the four Gricean maxims has been violated. However, the wording of Grice’s maxims is so loose and flexible that more or less any joke would violate one of his maxims and thus the ‘Cooperative Principle’. So, we are still left medi...
Article
Full-text available
What does it mean to lose a 'divine' language? The liturgical language used in the Russian Orthodox Church (ROC) (Church Slavonic) is perceived to index an authenticity because it is believed to be attuned to the inner, spiritual life of the worshipper. This article analyses the metasemiotic framing used by Russian Orthodox 'traditionalist' blogger...
Article
Full-text available
Hipponyms in Indo-European: using register to disentangle the etyma What was the distinction between the *márkos and *h 1 éo-etyma for horse in Indo-European? It is argued that the distinction could be explained by a register based hierarchy that is likely to have existed in the proto-language. There is good evidence for the *h 1 éo-reflex bein...
Article
Full-text available
How do Russian Orthodox Christians frame their understanding of semiotic ideologies of worship? That is to say, how do worshippers interpret liturgical language 'signs' and how do these interpretations colour their views as to which language is 'right' for the Church? There are to be found two semiotic ideologies of worship in Moscow. There are tra...
Article
Full-text available
What is the relationship between speech and experience? What is the experiential quality of speech? At first glance, these might seem like peculiar questions as speech and experience are inextricably tied together through habitual practices. The apparent inseparability of speech and experience renders such questions problematic for we cannot get be...
Article
Full-text available
Attempts have been made to examine how speakers frame linguistic varieties by employing social semiotic models. Using ethnographic data collected over many years, this article applies such a model to Iceland, once described as the ‘e-coli of linguistics’ – its size, historical isolation and relative linguistic homogeneity create conditions akin to...
Article
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en Some hostages of the FARC held in the Colombian Amazon spoke of how they believed a certain radio voice could result in an action. For over 20 years, every Saturday night a radio programme broadcast messages from the hostages’ families and loved ones. A small number of these captives recycled the prophetic radio voice in a dialogic interaction w...
Article
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This article triangulates radio, social relations, and remembrance to explore how the Faroese memorialize their dead and what these practices tell us about how 'communities of meaning' are symbolically created in small-scale societies. The Faroese have a remarkable appreciation for local remembrance through obituaries, death notices, well-attended...
Article
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The Moscow school of psycholinguistics offers an applied, Neo-Humboldtian and Vygotskyian approach to the problem of how language consolidates the cognitive and cultural experience of a community. Traditionally, the Moscow school has perceived the problem of intercultural communication to lie in the systemic and symbolic association of words which...
Article
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What was the impact of one-way radio messages aimed at hostages kidnapped by the FARC and held captive in the Colombian jungle? Messages were read out on air every Saturday night (reception in the Colombian jungle is best between 01:00am and 04:00am) for 22 years. Here, radio animated emotional registers of lived experience as one-way radio message...
Chapter
Full-text available
A book chapter on cultural nihilism as seen from the perspective of Nietzschean philosophy
Article
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‘Speaking’ and ‘belonging’ have a particular salience as indices of intimacy in a remote corner of northwest Greenland where connectedness is constantly reinforced through a distinct commonality of expression and certain social practices, such as very frequent visiting of one another, story-telling, recycling of names and a shared monistic philosop...
Article
Full-text available
This article explains the importance of the Faroese language and the ways in which it is spoken to a Faroese identity. It emphasizes the role and the significance of the radio as well as the policies of linguistic purism, which have been much discussed on air, to build and sustain this identity. A so-called high-intimacy language and public radio m...
Book
Full-text available
This book serves as an insightful ethnographic introduction to the language and oral traditions of the Inugguit, a sub-group of the Inuit who live in north-west Greenland. A unique work, it encompasses an overview of the grammar of Polar Eskimo - a language spoken by about 770 people - as well as a description of their oral traditions (drum-dancing...
Article
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Climate and environmental change places a variety of different pressures on remote, indigenous Arctic communities. The sea ice is the platform on which the Inugguit culture of northwest Greenland is based and thus it is inevitable that its retreat will have implications for the indigenous notion of place and for the manner in which the Inugguit art...
Article
Full-text available
The first-hand experience of learning an alien language is seldom the subject of a discussion on phenomenology, and yet the insights from fieldwork can be very rich in this regard. Immersed in a very different language culture where the pragmatics of silence, jokes and gestures have to be carefully interpreted to be understood, this article explore...
Book
Full-text available
Language, Society and Identity in early Iceland offers a much-needed exploration into the problem of linguistic and social identity construction in early Iceland, and is a fascinating account of an under examined historical-linguistic story that will spur further research and discussion amongst researchers.
Article
Full-text available
Having just returned from a year spent documenting the language and culture of the remote Inughuit community of northwestern Greenland, Dr Stephen Leonard describes how he witnessed first-hand the manner in which globalisation and consumerism are conspiring to destroy centuries-old cultures and traditions. We, human beings, rent the world for a per...
Chapter
Full-text available
Language Ideology and Standardisation in Iceland
Article
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Under the threat of Danish, the Faeroese language faced extinction in the nineteenth century. Today, the language is no longer considered 'corrupt' and is instead spoken by nearly the entire population as a first language. The reasons for its survival can be explained by a number of factors, including: the important role of oral heritage, the manne...
Article
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The language of a speech community can only act as an identity marker for all of its speakers if linguistic norms are widely shared and if a minimal number of language varieties are spoken. This article examines briefly how a linguistic norm came to serve the whole of Iceland and how a situation of relative linguistic homogeneity was maintained for...
Article
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The Greek Language - Georgakopoulou(A.), Silk(M.) (edd.) Standard Languages and Language Standards: Greek, Past and Present. (Centre for Hellenic Studies King's College London Publications 12.) Pp. xxviii + 367, figs. Farnham, Surrey and Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2009. Cased, £65. ISBN: 978-0-7546-6437-6. - Volume 61 Issue 1 - Teresa Shawcross, Step...
Article
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Iceland differed from other Norse colonies as it lacked social structures found elsewhere, but also because the Icelanders established their own complex social structures. This article examines aspects of these social structures to determine how they contributed to a new Icelandic identity. The emergence of these social structures may be attributed...
Article
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Iceland was settled in the year 870 A.D. by emigrants from Norway and the British Isles and remained an autonomous, self-governing land until its submission to the Norwegian Crown in 1262-64. 1 Within 60 years of the arrival of the first settlers, the Icelanders began to develop sophisticated legal structures in the absence of any coercive state in...
Article
Full-text available
Alongside orientation terms, the rich system of spatio-directiona l particles in Norse is explored here in the context of identity and the settlement of Norse colonies. The use of these terms in Old Icelandic te xts shows a high degree of conceptual and semantic continuity between the Norwegia ns in Norway and the settlers of Iceland and Greenland....

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Projects

Projects (8)
Project
To analyse the meta-semiotic framing used by Christian worshippers.
Project
What is the relationship between speech and experience? What is the experiential quality of speech? At first glance, these might seem like peculiar questions as speech and experience are inextricably tied together through habitual practices. The apparent inseparability of speech and experience renders such questions problematic for we cannot get beyond or outside of language by means of language alone. This project explores the ideological constitution of language as seen from the perspective of indigenous groups. It urges a more phenomenological approach to speech and experience.
Project
As the name of the project implies ALL RESEARCHERS/SCIENTISTS WITH ANY BACKGROUND (FROM STUDENT TO PROFESSORS) CAN SHARE THEIR PUBLISHED OR UNPUBLISHED WORKS... "SHARING IS CARING"