John Priestley Hutchison

Boston University,
African Studies Center
270 Bay State Road
Boston, MA 02215

Phone: (617) 353-7305


Research and Professional Interests

African languages, descriptive syntax of African languages, language typology, creole languages (Haitian and Capeverdean) & linguistics, language policy for education in Africa, France's linguistic and cultural policy, language teaching, language development for use in primary and adult education, textbook development, planning and developing linguistically and culturally relevant curricula, delivering education to rural areas, minority language publishing, literacy


1976 Ph.D. Linguistics (African Studies), Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
1971 M.A. Linguistics (African Studies) Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
1966 B.A. Economics (French), Pomona College, Claremont, CA

Current Position

Associate Professor of African Languages and Linguistics, Department of Modern Foreign Languages and Literatures/Program in Applied Linguistics.

African Language Coordinator, African Language Program Boston University African Studies Center.

Representative Publications

recent articles:

1995 The Politics of Educational Publishing in francophone Africa, 1944-94. In J. Hutchison and M. Nguessan, eds., The Language Question in Francophone Africa. West Newbury: Mother Tongue Editions.

1995 Bivalent verb projections in Bamanankan. In V. Manfredi and K. Reynolds, eds., Proceedings of the 1993 Niger-Congo Workshop, Boston University.


1994 Disonariu Preliminariu Kriolu (Preliminary Cape Verdean Kriolu-English Dictionary (with J.J.R. Pires and M. Goncalves). Boston: Funkul no Lobu.

1990 Dictionary of the Kanuri Language (with N. Cyffer). Dordrecht: Foris.

1981 A Reference Grammar of the Kanuri Language Madison: African Studies Program.

edited works:

1995 The Language Question in Francophone Africa (with M. Nguessan). West Newbury: Mother Tongue Editions.

1990 Current Approaches to African Linguistics, Volume 7 (with V. Manfredi). Dordrecht: Foris.

He is also the founding editor of Mother Tongue Editions, a non-profit publishing organization whose purpose is to facilitate and encourage African language literacy both in Africa and abroad. Profits from the sale of these publications are destined to be shared by the authors, and to be collected for the purchase of desktop publishing equipment to encourage African language publishing in Africa. Another priority is to help supply primary schools in countries where the languages of these publications are spoken with copies of the books published.

Go to Undergraduate Linguistics page

page maintained by C. Neidle, last modified 1/20/02.