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Assistant Professor of Anthropology, The University of Texas at Austin

James Slotta is an assistant professor of anthropology at the University of Texas at Austin. Much of his research to date has focused on the languages and communicative practices of people in the Yopno valley of Papua New Guinea, where he has conducted research since 2008. As a post-doctoral scholar, he documented the remarkable diversity of dialects of Yopno, the language spoken by the roughly 7,000 people living there. In collaboration with Kensy Cooperrider and Rafael Núñez, he has looked at the distinctive ways people in the region communicate about space and time. He is currently working on a book that explores the politics of listening in the Yopno valley, as people there grapple with national and global institutions--churches, schools, conservation NGOs--that seek to get them to accept new forms of knowledge.


  • –present
    Assistant Professor of Anthropology, University of Texas at Austin


  • 2012 
    University of Chicago, PhD Anthropology