Associate Professor of Linguistics
Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies
Interim Director, Canadian Studies Program

Richard A. Rhodes

Contact Information

Office: 1214 Dwinelle Hall

Biography and Research

Ph.D., Linguistics, University of Michigan, 1976
Rhodes's work has been centered on topics relating to American Indian languages, particularly those of the Algonquian family, bringing insights gained in fieldwork to bear on typological questions in syntax. He has done extensive fieldwork on the Ottawa dialect of Ojibwe which is spoken in Michigan and southern Ontario, and on Métchif, a language of the northern plains consisting of French and Cree elements. He has also done fieldwork on Sayula Popoluca, a Mixe-Zoquean language of southern Mexico. His most important work is the Eastern Ojibwe-Chippewa-Ottawa Dictionary, which incorporates two dialects of Ojibwe. He has written extensively on the descriptive syntax and syntactic typology of Ojibwe, on the historical linguistics of Métchif, and on lexical semantics and lexicography in American Indian languages. His current research focuses on the intersection of language, history, and geography.

Selected Publications

  • "Directional pre-verbs in Ojibwe and the registration of path", in Papers of the Thirty-sixth Algonquian Conference, ed. by H. C. Wolfart (Winnipeg: University of Manitoba, 2005), pp. 371-382
  • "Mixe-Zoquean Languages", in Encyclopedia of Languages and Linguistics, 2nd edn., ed. by Keith Brown (Amsterdam: Elsevier, 2005), vol. 8
  • "The Cree of Métchif", in Papers of the Thirty-ninth Algonquian Conference, ed. by K. S. Hele & R. Darnell (London: University of Western Ontario, 2008), pp. 569-580
  • "The Phonological History of Metchif", in Le français d'un continent à l'autre: Mélanges offerts à Yves Charles Morin, ed. by F. Martineau and L. Baronian (Les Voies du français, 1; Québec: Presses de l'Université Laval, 2009), pp. 423-442
  • "VC reduplication in Sayula Popoluca", Grazer Linguisticsche Studien 71 (2009) 59-78
  • "Missing obliques: Some anomalies in Ojibwe syntax", in Hypothesis A/Hypothesis B: Linguistic Explorations in Honor of David Perlmutter, ed. by Donna Gerdts, John Moore, and Maria Polinsky (Cambridge: MIT Press, 2010), pp. 427-456
  • Relative root complement: a unique grammatical relation in Algonquian syntax. In Michael Cysouw, Orin Gensler, and Jan Wohlgemuth (eds.), Rara & Rarissima: Documenting the Fringes of Linguistic Diversity (Empirical Approaches to Language Typology). Berlin: de Gruyter. pp. 305-324 (2010)
  • "Ditransitive Constructions in Ojibwe", in Studies in Ditransitive Constructions: A Comparative Handbook, ed. by Andrej Malchukov, Martin Haspelmath, and Bernard Comrie (Berlin: de Gruyter, 2010), pp. 626-650
  • "Algonquian Trade Languages Revisited", in Papers of the Fortieth Algonquian Conference, ed. by K. Hele & J. R. Valentine (Albany, NY: SUNY Press, 2012), pp. 358-369
  • "The Michif Dictionary and Language Change in Métchif", in Papers of the Forty-First Algonquian Conference, ed. by K. Hele & J. R. Valentine (Albany, NY: SUNY Press, 2013), pp. 268-278
  • "Transitivity in Ojibwe", with J. Randall Valentine, in Valency Classes: A comparative handbook, ed. by Andrej Malchukov, Martin Haspelmath, Iren Hartmmann, and Bernard Comrie (Berlin: de Gruyter, 2015), pp. 1206-1264
  • "Instrumentality and Frames in Ojibwe", in Papers of the Forty-Third Algonquian Conference, ed. by M. Macaulay & J. R. Valentine (Albany, NY: SUNY Press, 2015), pp. 195-206
  • "On the semantics of abstract finals: 35 years later", in Papers of the Forty-Fourth Algonquian Conference, ed. by M. Macaulay & J. R. Valentine (Albany, NY: SUNY Press, 2016), pp. 289-310
  • "Vectors of language spread at the central steppe periphery: Finno-Ugric as catalyst language", with Johanna Nichols, in Proceedings of the XV Nordic Theoretical Archeology Group (April, 2015) (in press)