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The Australian National University

Owen Edwards

Owen Edwards is a linguistics Ph.D. candidate at the Australian National University. The topic of his thesis is ‘Metathesis in Uab Meto’, for which he plans to figure out and disentangle the phonological, pragmatic, syntactic and morphological conditions that condition word final consonant-vowel metathesis in the Amarasi variety of Uab Meto, an Austronesian language of West Timor.

An example of synchronic metathesis in Amarasi can be seen in the following brief exchange between two speakers who are discussing the preparations another person has already made for his funeral:

Roni:  M-ak in n-hain n-mees?
2-say  3SG  3-dig  3-alone 
'You said he dug it alone?'

Merpati:  In of a-n-hani n-mees
3SG  sure  EPENTH-3-dig  3-alone 
'He sure did dig it alone!'

In addition to figuring out metathesis in West Timor, Owen is also co-authoring a grammar of Tolaki, an Austronesian language of mainland South-East Sulawesi, on which he wrote his honours thesis (available online).

He is also investigating the linguistic history of Enggano, an unusual Austonesian language of the barrier islands, based on published materials.

When not working on Austronesian languages, Owen finds time to participate in the Anglo-Saxon reading group, read Russian literature (in translation), go mountain bike riding, or even just sit in the sun and drink tea.

Essential links:

  • Ethnologue report for Amarasi
  • Timor projects;
  • Updated:  26 August 2016/ Responsible Officer:  Mark Donohue/ Page Contact:  Mark Donohue