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Speaker: Professor Martine Robbeets

Lecture by Prof Martine Robbeets: “Is Japanese made-in-China? Language, culture and genes”

Part of the Abralin ao Vivo – Linguists Online lecture series
The origins of the Japanese language are among the most disputed issues of historical linguistics. In this talk, Prof Robbeets presents evidence for Transeurasian affiliation, relating Japanese to Korean, Tungusic, Mongolic and Turkic languages. This classification gives rise to new questions with regard to the location of the original homeland, the dating and the early dispersals of Transeurasian languages. She addresses these through ‘triangulating’ genetics, archaeology and linguistics in a unified perspective, among others presenting the first whole-genome analyses of ancient DNA for the Korean Peninsula and the Southern Ryukyus. By combining evidence from the three disciplines, Prof Robbeets shows that the spread of Japanese to the Japanese Islands was driven by agriculture. [more]
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