1. University of Virginia
  2. Arts & Sciences

Virginia D. Hymes

My earliest interest in anthropology was focussed on linguistics, but three years in Puerto Rico added a fascination with how anthropologists study the ways different people work out ways of being human, raising children, living in families, celebrating seasonal rituals. Graduate work in anthropology at Indiana and later at UCLA made it possible to keep all these interests active. Later, opportunities arose at Harvard, Berkeley and Penn, though not as a student, to learn to observe child-rearing practices, to work on a child language acquisition project, and to work on a project in comparative ethnography of speaking. When I returned to graduate school at Penn in the early seventies it was to prepare to work on the Sahaptin language at Warm Springs reservation in Oregon. That work continues into the present. Beginning in 1975, teaching in the Folklore Department at Penn, I began to work on oral narratives, and their analysis as a kind of poetry. This work has involved narratives in Sahaptin, other Native American languages and English. Most recently, at Virginia, I have taught about Native American women and developed my interest in gender issues that had began at Penn.



Linguistic anthropology, North American Indian ethnography and linguistics, analysis of oral narrative, ethnography of speaking.


In Memoriam

J. Christopher Crocker
Professor, Emeritus
James Deetz
Professor, Emeritus
Floyd Nelson House
First Chair (Anthropology & Sociology)
Dell H. Hymes
Commonwealth Professor of Anthropology, Emeritus
Virginia D. Hymes
Lecturer, Emerita
Nancy J. Martin-Perdue
Scholar in Residence, Emerita
Charles L. Perdue, Jr.
Professor, Emeritus
Edith Turner
Lecturer Emerita
Victor W. Turner
William R. Kenan Professor of Anthropology and Religion
Roy Wagner
Edward H. Winter
Professor, Emeritus
Virginia Young
Lecturer, Emerita