Department of English
- Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania
- B.A., University of Maryland College Park
- A.A., Prince George's Community College
BiographyDr. David Bowie (yes, that actually is his real name) is a sociolinguist and dialectologist who grew up in Southern Maryland, where fried green tomatoes are an ordinary food rather than just the name of a movie, and people are as likely to use "coke" as a generic term for a soft drink as they are to call it anything else. He bounced around from college to college as an undergraduate, picking up an associate's degree from Prince George's Community College along the way, until he fell in love with (and got a bachelor's degree in) linguistics from the University of Maryland College Park. He then received a doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania, where he focused on the quantitative modeling of linguistic behavior. After that he held faculty positions at Brigham Young University and the University of Central Florida, and came to the University of Alaska Anchorage in 2009, where he is now an associate professor.His early research compared the way people perceive and produce language, though he's since drifted into looking at issues like the connection between language and aging, and the ways individuals express their social identities (particularly religious affiliation) through language. He's begun conducting research on English as it's spoken in Alaska, because there hasn't been very much serious work on that yet (which makes Alaska the last frontier for linguistics, as well), and plans to eventually produce a dialect atlas of all of the Englishes spoken in the state.