Emanuel J. Drechsel


Professor and Advisor


Areas of Special Academic Interest 

Pidgin and creole studies, historical sociolinguistics, and ethnohistory with a focus on North America and the Pacific; history of linguistics, anthropology, and the social sciences


Current Research

Philological and ethnohistorical research on Maritime Polynesian Pidgin; Wilhelm von Humboldt (1767-1835) and early American linguistics and anthropology


Selected Recent Publications

“Maritime Polynesian Pidgin of the Eastern Pacific.” [in textbook on Pacific languages/in preparation]

Language Contact in the Early Colonial Pacific: Maritime Polynesian Pidgin Before Pidgin English. (Cambridge Approaches to Language Contact.) Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2014 (see http://www.cambridge.org/us/academic/subjects/languages-linguistics/historical-linguistics/language-contact-early-colonial-pacific-maritime-polynesian-pidgin-pidgin-english?format=HB)

Etymological Vocabulary and English Index of Maritime Polynesian Pidgin [vocabulary accompanying Language Contact in the Early Pacific and published on line]. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2014 (see http://www.cambridge.org/us/academic/subjects/languages-linguistics/historical-linguistics/language-contact-early-colonial-pacific-maritime-polynesian-pidgin-pidgin-english?format=HB)

“Ethnohistory of Speaking: Maritime Polynesian Pidgin in a Trilogy of Historical-Sociolinguistic Attestations.” In: Isa Buchstaller, Anders Holmberg, and Mohammad Al-Moaily (eds.), Pidgins and Creoles beyond Africa-Europe Encounters. Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company, pp. 7-40, 2014

“Contacts Between Native Americans and Native Hawaiians Since World War II.” In: Pacific Studies 31 (2): 53-85, 2008

“Mobilian Jargon in Historiography: An Exercise in the Ethnohistory of Speaking.” In: Southern Anthropologist, 33 (1/2): 24-36, 2008

“Wilhelm von Humboldt and Edward Sapir: Analogies and Homologies in Their Linguistic Thoughts.” In: E.F.K. Koerner (ed.), Edward Sapir. (Critical Assessments of Leading Linguists.) New York: Routledge, vol. 1, pp. 110-139, 2007 [republication of 1988 article]

“Sociolinguistic-Ethnohistorical Observations on ‘Pidgin English’ in Typee and Omoo.” In: Jill Barnum, Wyn Kelley, and Chris Sten (eds.), “Whole Oceans Away:” Melville and the Pacific. Kent, Ohio: Kent State University Press, pp. 49-62, 2007

“Language Contact in the Early Colonial Pacific: Evidence for a Maritime Polynesian Jargon or Pidgin.” In: John H. Rickford and Suzanne Romaine (eds.), Creole Genesis, Attitudes and Discourse. Studies Celebrating Charlene J. Sato. (Creole Language Library 20.) Amsterdam, Philadelphia: John Benjamins, pp. 71-96, 1999

Mobilian Jargon: Linguistic and Sociohistorical Aspects of a Native American Pidgin. (Oxford Studies in Language Contact.) Oxford: Clarendon Press/Oxford University Press, 1997 (see https://global.oup.com/academic/product/mobilian-jargon-9780198240334?q=Oxford%20Studies%20of%20Endangered%20Languages&lang=en&cc=us#)

“An Integrated Vocabulary of Mobilian Jargon, a Native American Pidgin of the Mississippi Valley.” In: Anthropological Linguistics 38 (2): 248-354, 1996

“Native American Contact Languages of the Contiguous United States.” In: Stephen A. Wurm, Peter Mühlhäusler, and Darrell T. Tryon (eds.), Atlas of Languages of Intercultural Communication in the Pacific, Asia, and the Americas. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, pp. 1213-1239 and Map 128, 1996



Ph.D., Anthropology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, May 1979

M.A., Linguistics, University of Wisconsin-Madison, May 1976

M.A., Anthropology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, May 1974

Maturität, Arts and Sciences, Realgymnasium Basel (Switzerland), March 1969