Anika Gerfer

   dr. Anika Gerfer

     Chair of Variation Linguistics (Prof. Deuber)

 

      Johannisstraße 12-20
      D - 48143 Münster
      Room: 307


      Phone: +49 251 83-24591
      Email: anika.gerfer@uni-muenster.de   

     

 

Researchgate            Academiaedu

 
  • Research Areas

    • Sociolinguistics
    • World Englishes
    • Language attitudes
    • Creole languages
    • Language in the media
  • CV

    Education

    Postdoc, University of Münster
    PhD candidate, University of Münster
    M.A. National and Transnational Studies, University of Münster
    B.A. in English and French, University of Münster

    Positions

    Postdoctoral Researcher, Chair of Variation Linguistics, University of Münster
    Research Assistant, Chair of Variation Linguistics, University of Münster
    Research Assistant, Chair of English Linguistics, University of Münster
  • Projects

    • Funny or offensive? Performance and perceptions of stereotypes in “Jamaican Countdown” (since )
      Own resources project
    • Pragmatic strategies by multilingual speakers of English in Nigeria ()
      Individual project: Alexander von Humboldt Foundation - Research Group Linkage Programme | Project Number: Ref 3.4 - 1158639 - NGA - IP
  • Publications

    • Gerfer, Anika. . ‘Authentic crossing? Jamaican Creole in African dancehall.’ In Contact languages and music, edited by J. T. Farquharson, A. Hollington, B. Jones, 231–257. Kingston: University of the West Indies Press.
    • Jansen, Lisa; Gerfer, Anika. . ‘The Arctic Monkeys live at the Royal Albert Hall: Investigating Turner’s “lounge singer shimmer”.’ In Stylistic Approaches to Pop Culture, edited by V. Werner & C. Schubert, .. New York: Routledge. [online first]
    • Meer, Philipp; Fuchs, Robert; Gerfer, Anika; Gut, Ulrike; Li, Zeyu. . ‘Rhotics in Scottish Standard English.’ English World-Wide 42, No. 2: 121–144. doi: 10.1075/eww.00070.mee.
    • Gerfer, Anika. . ‘Global reggae and the appropriation of Jamaican Creole.’ World Englishes 37, No. 4: 668–683. doi: 10.1111/weng.12319.
    • Gut, U., Unuabonah, F., Daniel, F., Gerfer, A., Oladipupo, R., Oyebola, F.Offers in Nigerian English.’ In Linguistic aspects of the development of English worldwide: Synchronic and diachronic perspectives, edited by R. Fuchs, S. Dita, M. Yao, A. M. Borlongan. Routledge. [submitted / under review]
  • Talks

    • Gut, Ulrike; Unuabonah, Foluke; Daniel, Florence; Gerfer, Anika; Oladipupo, Rotimi; Oyebola, Folajimi (): ‘The role of social and linguistic factors in the production of Nigerian English speech acts’. Pragmatic Variation across the New Englishes, University of Münster, .
    • Gerfer, Anika; Jansen, Lisa (): ‘“Di game show bout spellin’ and ting”: Performance, production, and parody of stereotypes in Jamaican Countdown’. Sociolinguistics of Pop Culture, University of Bamberg, .
    • Gerfer, Anika; Jansen, Lisa (): ‘The performance of stereotypes in “Jamaican Countdown”’. 3rd International Conference on Sociolinguistics: Diversities, New Media and Language Management, Charles University & Czech Academy of Sciences, Prague/Online, .
    • Gerfer, Anika (): ‘Jamaican Creole in global reggae and dancehall music: Corpus compilation and analysis’. Corpus Linguistics in World Englishes, University of Regensburg/Online, .
    • Gerfer, Anika (): ‘Crossing and the stylization of Jamaican Creole in reggae and dancehall music: Jamaicans’ attitudes ’. International Conference, Stylistic Approaches to Pop Culture, University of Bamberg, Bamberg/Online, .
    • Gerfer, Anika (): ‘Jamaican attitudes toward the linguistic appropriation of Jamaican Creole’. Unsettling Language: Sociolinguistics Symposium 23, The University of Hong Kong/Online, .
    • Gerfer, Anika (): ‘Jamaicans’ attitudes toward Jamaican Creole in global reggae and dancehall music’. ISLE 6 - Sixth International Conference of the International Society for the Linguistics of English, University of Eastern Finland/Online, .
    • Meer, Philipp; Fuchs, Robert; Gerfer, Anika; Gut, Ulrike; Li, Zeyu (): ‘Rhotics in Scottish Standard English’. BICLCE 2019 - 8th Biennial International Conference on the Linguistics of Contemporary English, University of Bamberg, .
    • Gerfer, Anika; Jansen, Lisa (): ‘The Arctic Monkeys then and now’. 8th Biennial International Conference on the Linguistics of Contemporary English, University of Bamberg, .
    • Gerfer, Anika (): ‘Crossing: Jamaican Creole in reggae and dancehall music’. 2nd International Conference of Sociolinguistics: Insights from Superdiversity, Complexity and Multimodality, Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest, .
    • Gerfer, Anika (): ‘White appropriation of Jamaican Creole in reggae music’. ISLE Summer School 2017, University of Regensburg, .
    • Gerfer, Anika (): ‘White appropriation of Jamaican Creole in reggae music’. 7th Biennial Conference on the Linguistics of Contemporary English, University of Vigo, .
    • Gerfer, Anika (): ‘White appropriation of Jamaican Creole in reggae music’. Dynamik – Variation – System. Interdisziplinäre Nachwuchstagung an der Graduate School Empirische und Angewandte Sprachwissenschaft an der WWU Münster, University of Münster, .
    • Gerfer, Anika (): ‘The language of English indie music: Kate Nash's style of singing’. 1st International Conference of Sociolinguistics: Insights from Superdiversity, Complexity and Multimodality, Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest, .
    • Gerfer, Anika (): ‘The language of English indie music: Kate Nash's style of singing’. Sociolinguistics Symposium 21 - Attitudes and Prestige, Universidad de Murcia, Murcia, .
  • Doctoral Thesis

    Jamaican Creole in global reggae and dancehall performances: Language use, perceptions, attitudes

    My doctoral thesis focuses on the appropriation of Jamaican Creole (JC) by non-Jamaican artists in the context of reggae and dancehall music. Over the last couple of decades, JC has spread across the globe, especially through reggae and dancehall music, leading many non-Jamaican reggae and dancehall artists to adopt elements of Jamaican culture and language in their music performances. The adoption of elements of Jamaican culture such as dreadlocks and reggae music by non-Jamaicans is often perceived as cultural appropriation by some people. The debate over cultural appro­priation, which is often loosely defined as the taking of another culture’s practices with­out consent, is currently extremely widespread and emotionally charged. While cultural appropriation was nearly unheard of until 2012, it has developed into a consistent issue as the Internet was modernizing and social media platforms such as Twitter and Instagram were becoming more popular. This development enabled groups with opposing perspectives to communicate with one another in real time, resulting in both reflective conversation about and oversimplification of cultural appropriation.

    Opinions about whether or not an act counts as cultural (mis)appropriation differ greatly from individual to individual. This thesis adopts an integrated approach to examining the appropriation of JC by non-Jamaican reggae and dancehall artists as well as Jamaican perceptions of and attitudes toward it. In the first study, a quantitative analysis of language use in Jamaican and non-Jamaican reggae and dancehall performances is carried out. While previous studies on language production in global reggae and dancehall performances primarily served to find out which features are adopted by non-Jamaican artists, quantitative research on the topic at hand is scarce. Therefore, this study analyzes Jamaican and non-Jamaican reggae and dancehall artists’ use of JC phonetic and morphosyntactic features and investigates whether certain linguistic and extralinguistic variables have an effect on the artists’ linguistic behavior.

    In the second study, the focus shifts to the audience’s perceptions and attitudes. This study examines Jamaicans’ reactions to and evaluations of non-Jamaican reggae and dancehall artists’ use of JC. Structured interviews with Jamaican university students provide the basis for this investigation. The overall aims of this second study are to find out whether the Jamaican interviewees are able to identify the non-Jamaican artists as such, which linguistic and non-linguistic features influence their perceptions of the performances, and how they evaluate the use of JC by non-Jamaican reggae and dancehall artists. Exploring Jamaicans’ attitudes toward the use of JC in global reggae and dancehall performances can provide insight into their perceptions of linguistic and extralinguistic features, their definitions and evaluations of cultural and linguistic appropriation in the context of reggae and dancehall music, and their overall language attitudes toward JC.


    Supervisors:

  • Postdoctoral Project

    Teachers’ and secondary students’ language attitudes in the UK

    Varieties other than standard English have long been marginalized in UK schools. Officially there are no requirements in terms of students’ and teachers’ accents and the national curriculum states that “RP [Received Pronunciation] has no special status in the national curriculum” (Department for Education 2013a: 34). However, there seems to be an overarching idea of some accents as unacceptable and inappropriate in the school context. Research by Baratta (e.g. 2021a, 2021b) has shown that many British teachers in training are asked by their mentors to change or reduce their accents. As there are no official guidelines in terms of accent standards, mentors are largely free to determine what is and what is not an ‘appropriate’ accent for teaching. Baratta stresses that more work is needed on a larger scale to investigate teachers’ and students’ attitudes toward accents in the education sector in the UK. Particularly, future research should examine what kind of accent(s) is/are deemed acceptable for the teaching of students in the UK. This postdoc project addresses this research gap and investigates language attitudes toward different British accents among teachers and secondary students.

    This postdoc project examines teachers’ and secondary students’ language attitudes in the UK in the education context. The following research questions will be addressed:

    1. What are English teachers’ and secondary students’ implicit/covert attitudes toward different British English accents in the educational context? (How) do they differ?
    2. What are English teachers’ and students’ explicit/overt attitudes toward different British English accents in the educational context? (How) do they differ?
    3. What are the discrepancies, if any, between the implicit and explicit attitudes of the teachers and students with regard to different British English accents in the educational context?

    In order to answer these questions, a mixed-methods approach is developed. Both quantitative and qualitative data will be collected via different approaches. In the course of this, the following indirect as well as direct research methods to elicit both implicit and explicit language attitudes are used:

    • Personalized IAT: A personalized IAT (see Rosseel et al. 2018) is developed in order to elicit teachers’ and students’ deeply embedded attitudes toward the use of Northern and Southern British accents in the school context.
    • Indirect approach: Through a verbal-guise test with different auditory stimuli produced by speakers of different British accents, teachers’ and students’ attitudes are elicited. Following Levon et al. (2021), the following accents are included: Received Pronunciation, Estuary English, Multicultural London English, General Northern English, Urban West Yorkshire English. The informants’ responses are captured on Visual Analog Scales (see Llamas & Watt 2014), followed by an accent recognition study.
    • Direct approach: In addition to these approaches eliciting implicit and covert language attitudes, interviews are conducted with British teachers and students. Open-ended questions about the use of regional and social British accents in the school context will shed light on their overt attitudes toward accent variation in this particular context.

    References

    Baratta, A. (2021a). A lack of phonological inherentness: Perceptions of accents in UK education. In G. Planchenault & L. Poljak (Eds.), Pragmatics of accents (pp. 141–162). John Benjamins.

    Baratta, A. (2021b). Varieties of ‘standard accents’ among teachers in contemporary Britain. World Englishes, 1–16. https://doi.org/10.1111/weng.12561.

    Department for Education (2013a). The National Curriculum in England: Key Stages 1 and 2 Framework Document, DfE, London.

    Levon, E., Sharma, D., Watt, D., Cardoso, A., & Ye, Y. (2021). Accent bias and perceptions of professional competence in England. Journal of English Linguistics, 49(4), 355–388. https://doi.org/10.1177/00754242211046316.

    Llamas, C., & Watt, D. (2014). Scottish, English, British? Innovations in attitude measurement. Language and Linguistics Compass, 8(11), 610–617. https://doi.org/10.1111/lnc3.12109.

    Rosseel, L., Speelman, D., & Geeraerts, D. (2018). Measuring language attitudes using the Personalized Implicit Association Test: A case study on regional varieties of Dutch in Belgium. Journal of Linguistic Geography, 6(1), 20–39. https://doi.org/10.1017/jlg.2018.3.